Signs of Parental Alienation

If one parent is trying to distance their children from the other parent, there may be signs of parental alienation. Attempts to alienate a child from a parent can be made for a variety of reasons, but the result is always negative for the child. If this is happening in your life, contact a child custody lawyer right away. Law Offices of Rick D. Banks can help. Call us at 559-222-4891.


Common Reasons for Parental Alienation

A parent may attempt to alienate a child from the other parent for an array of reasons. One of the most common is to punish the other parent for a perceived wrongdoing. If a parent wants to cause a problem for the other parent, they may take negative actions with the children involved.


Another cause of alienation may be a personality disorder that causes the alienating parent to respond to stressful situations in irrational manners. If parents are arguing and one parent is not able to communicate well because of a mental illness or disorder, they may attempt alienation to gain favor from the child.


Signs of Parental Alienation

Parental alienation may even be considered a syndrome if it becomes extreme in one parent. Common symptoms or signs include the following:


Making Children Angry at the Other Parent

A parent may criticize the other parent in order to make the children angry at them. For example, if a parent says they can’t afford new school clothes because the other parent used the money on a fancy new car, then they may be attempting to make the children upset at the other parent. Other common statements may be made about why the relationship didn’t work or how inconsiderate the other parent has been towards the family. This is often an attempt to use the child to get back at the other parent.

Speaking Badly of the Other Parent in Front of the Child

Even if an alienating parent does not make negative comments to the child directly, if comments are made within hearing distance of the child, they may develop anger towards the other parent. In these situations, the alienating parent often sees themselves as a “good person,” and they rarely take responsibility for their actions in the failing relationship. This amounts to passive aggressive actions towards the other parent.


Sharing Inappropriate Details with the Child

When a parent gives children details about divorce or parental conflict that should not be shared, they may be making attempts at alienation. This can cause a child to feel anger towards the other parent, and may make them feel responsible for the situation.


Using Body Language to Convey Negative Messages About the Other Parent

Rolling one’s eyes or shaking one’s head regarding things about the other parent can also send a negative message to children about the other parent. Children understand body language and alienation can occur through its use.


Co-Parenting Irresponsibly

Even if a relationship falls apart, two parents should still work together to provide care for their children. Co-parenting is an important part of a child’s life. If a parent refuses to be agreeable and make arrangements with the other parent, they may be alienating.


False Accusations of Abuse

Alienating parents often make false accusations of abuse, creating a negative situation in the minds of the children and the court. This can cause legal problems for the other parent as well as alienation from children.

How to Prove Child Abandonment

If your child has been without one or both of their parents for a period of time, you may wonder how to prove child abandonment. California has a variety of laws that address child abandonment and how it should be handled by the court. Read below to learn more about this situation. For more information about your specific case, call Law Offices of Rick D. Banks at 559-222-4891.


What Is Child Abandonment?

A parent may have abandoned their child if they have left their child with the other parent for over a year, without any communication or they have left their child with another person for over six months without any communication. Often, this happens when a child is left with one parent or a family member. Sometimes, the child will be left with foster parents or in state custody. However, if a parent fails to communicate with their children for a long period of time, abandonment may be a consideration.


Proving Child Abandonment

In order to prove child abandonment, you must show that a parent has failed to take part in their child’s life for a long period of time. That includes lack of visitation and no calls for one year if a child is with their other biological parent or six months if they are with someone else.


You must submit testimony or an affidavit to the court claiming that there has been no contact between the child and parent for a period of time. It is then up to the other parent to submit evidence that they have communicated with the child. If a parent is present and claims to have had communication with their child, it is unlikely that their parental rights will be terminated because they are making an effort to interact at that time.


Termination of Parental Rights

If a parent abandons their child, you may not have to go to court to litigate the child abandonment case; however, you will have to go to court to terminate a parent’s parental rights. If you fail to terminate parental rights, then a parent will still have the right to establish custody and visitation with their child.


If a parent agrees to terminate their parental rights, then the court process will be easier and less costly. You will still need to file an agreement with the family law court so that it can become a court order. Once the court issues an order terminating parental rights, that parent can no longer establish custody or visitation with the child.


Courts carefully protect the parental rights of biological parents. Both mothers’ and fathers’ rights are considered by the court during termination proceedings. If a parent agrees to terminate their own parental rights, it’s still important to consult with an experienced child custody attorney.


Contact a Child Custody Attorney About Child Abandonment

If you are wondering how to prove child abandonment, contact a child custody attorney right away. We will gather the necessary evidence to help support your case. Call Law Offices of Rick D. Banks at 559-222-4891.

Temporary Custody Order for Grandparents

Grandparents can gain custody of their grandchildren in various ways. One way is to obtain a temporary custody order for grandparents if there is a situation that warrants an immediate need for or temporary change of custody. Read below to learn more about custody orders that allow children to live with their grandparents.


Call Law Offices of Rick D. Banks for help with your child custody issues. When a grandparent wants to gain custody of their grandchild, it can be a complex issue fraught with many court hearings and legal documents. Contact us today at 555-222-4891.


Gaining Physical Custody with Power of Attorney

Grandparents may gain physical custody of their grandchildren through a power of attorney (POA). When a parent asks grandparents to care for a child on a temporary basis, it is often done through an information arrangement. However, a POA can ensure that the grandparents can make decisions regarding school and medical treatment.


A POA is a simple form giving custody to grandparents that is then notarized and submitted to the court. The court may then issue a temporary custody order for grandparents. A POA may be effective for a certain amount of time, ending on a specified date, or until the child is 18. Additionally, the parent may revoke the POA with the court at any time.


Some states allow parents to sign medical and educational consent forms that make a full POA unnecessary. If the parent’s whereabouts are unknown, grandparents may be able to file affidavits to obtain a POA and other consent to care for their grandchildren.


Fostering Grandchildren

Grandparents may also serve as foster parents for their grandchildren on a temporary basis. This may be called kinship care. In this situation, the grandparents get physical custody of their grandchildren, but the state retains “legal custody.” With legal custody, the state may make major decisions regarding education and medical care.


When grandparents are foster parents, they may have to go through training and certification. They will also be subject to visits and evaluations from Child Protective Services.


In 2008, a federal law passed that mandates notification of adult relatives when children are taken into state custody. Relatives are given an opportunity to foster and are provided with support to make the situation successful.


Guardianship of Grandchildren

When a grandparent serves as the guardian of a grandchild, they have legal custody and can make decisions about major life matters, such as education and medical care. A guardian may name someone else to care for their grandchildren if the grandparent is unable to do so themselves. Parents generally retain visitation rights under a guardianship situation.


Adoption of Grandchildren

Adoption is a more permanent placement arrangement than other change of custody situations for grandchildren. Adoption would give grandparents parental rights and the ability to make major decisions about all areas of a child’s life. Grandparents who adopt their grandchildren may be eligible for an adoption subsidy and adoption tax credits. Children remain eligible for medical care through the state.


Call a Grandparent Custody Attorney Today

Obtaining temporary custody orders for grandparents can be difficult. We can help. Call Law Offices of Rick D. Banks at 555-222-4891.

Reasons Grandparents Can File for Custody of a Grandchild

Considering Grandparents for Child Custody


Although it may seem like a positive move, the court will not grant custody of children to grandparents unless there is a legitimate reason why it is necessary. The court will not give grandparents special consideration, even though they are family members. Parental rights always come first unless the child is in danger.


Not Agreeing With Parenting Style Is Not Valid Reason for Change of Custody

Parenting styles are very different now than they were even a few decades ago. What was once considered “normal” discipline may not be called child abuse. Even celebrities’ parenting styles are being highly criticized by the public and courts for the way they discipline their children.

It is understandable that grandparents may not agree with the parenting style of their sons or daughters. However, having a different parenting style is very different than a child being at risk or in danger.


Conditions that May Warrant Change in Custody

The court will only consider changing custody of children in situations that are dangerous to the children. That may include:

  • Abandonment – If a child is being left alone for long periods of time or a parent has completely abandoned their child, the court may consider new custody arrangements.
  • Emotional Abuse – This can be more damaging that physical abuse in some ways, often requiring years of therapy or counseling. If you can prove that the children are being subjected to emotional abuse, the court may consider a change of custody.
  • Neglect – Even if parents are in the house, they may not be taking an active role in caring for the child. If they fail to take part in a child’s life and care for them properly, then the court may consider a change of custody.
  • Physical Abuse – If a parent is physically abusing a child, the court will consider change of custody. It is not necessary for the physical abuse to be malicious. In some situations, the parent may think they are doing what is best, but not in the eyes of the court.
  • Sexual Abuse or Child Exploitation – If you uncover that a child is being sexually abused or exploited, it’s important to call the police immediately so they can record the situation. A court will want evidence of this situation, and a change of custody is likely.
  • Substance Abuse – If parents are abusing drugs or alcohol and cannot properly care for their children, the court will consider a change of custody.

Contact a Child Custody Lawyer for Help Today

If you have questions about reasons grandparents can file for custody of a grandchild, contact Law Offices of Rick D. Banks at 559-222-4891.