The de facto custodian provision can be used by grandparents, former step-parents, or former same-sex partners to care for children that they love in situations where the parents have not and will not provide care.
A caretaker can request, that the court grant permanent, physical and legal custody of a child as a de facto custodian if:
1.) the caretaker has has lived with the child for 24 months immediately before filing, and
2.) neither parent is present and the parent(s) show a lack of demonstrated consistent parenting participation for a period of:
a.) six months if the child is less than three years of age, or
b.) one year or more, even if the time is not consecutive, for children older than three years of age.
Lack of demonstrated consistent participation means:
Refusal or neglect of a parent to comply with duties imposed by the parent child relationship. These duties include providing food, clothing, shelter, health care, education, creating a nurturing and consistent relationship, and other care and control necessary for the child's healthy development.
If you have further questions about this topic speak to an attorney. Schedule a free consultation with the Law Office of Stacey Keenan by calling (651) 252-7238.
Court Considerations in Child Placement Decisions