Legal Rights for Grandparents Caring for Their Grandchildren: Caretaker Affidavit and Power of Attorney

Legal Rights for Grandparents in OhioMore and more grandparents, in the State of Ohio, are faced with the task of raising their grandchildren.

Ohio provides two (2) solutions for grandparents in these types of situations, without the need to go to court and litigate full legal custody between the grandparents and the natural parents.

Ohio Revised Code §3109.65, provides a solution for the situation where a child is living with the grandparent and the parents of the child cannot be found.  This is only a temporary solution and is not the same thing as legal custody, but it allows the grandparent to do necessary things for the child such as, enrolling the child in school and taking the child to the doctor, etc.

The statute states, in relevant part, that if a child is living with a grandparent who has made reasonable attempts to locate and contact both of the child’s parents, guardian, or custodian but has been unable to do so the grandparent may obtain the authority to exercise care, physical custody, including the authority to enroll the child in school, to discuss with the school district the child’s educational progress, to consent to all school related matters regarding the child and to consent to medical, psychological or dental treatment for the child by executing a caretaker authorization affidavit in accordance with section 3109.67 of the Ohio Revised Code.

Ohio’s caretaker affidavit can also be utilized without attempting to locate the following parent.

  1. If paternity has not been established with regard to the child’s father
  2. If the child is currently under an existing custody order
  3. If the parent subject to the custody order is prohibited from receiving notice of relocation in accordance with section 3109.05.1 of the revised code; or
  4. If a parents rights have been permanently terminated by a court of competent jurisdiction, pursuant to Chapter 2151 of the Ohio Revised Code.

The more common scenario is when grandparents are raising their grandchild with the knowledge and consent of the biological parents.  Ohio law provides that in certain circumstances a parent may give a grandparent a Power of Attorney to enroll the child in school, care for the child’s medical needs, etc.  This is similar to the caretaker affidavit, however the parent is present and willing to execute the power of attorney.  Ohio Revised Code section 3109.52, authorizes a grandparent power of attorney.  Furthermore, the affidavit must be executed by both parents if they are married and living as husband and wife, if the child is subject to a shared parenting order or if the child is subject to a custody order.

Section 3109.52 , does not require a parents signature on the affidavit if the legal custodian is prohibited from receiving a notice of relocation pursuant to section 3109.05.01 of the revised code, or if the parents parental rights have been terminated by a juvenile court of competent jurisdiction.  If the parent who is not the residential parent and legal custodian can not be located, with reasonable efforts, that parent does not need to execute the affidavit.

Finally, only one (1) of the parents will need to execute the grandparents power of attorney affidavit if the parent, who is the residential parent and legal custodian of the child, pursuant to court order or the parent whom the child is residing the majority of the school year in cases in which no court has issued an order designating a parent as a residential parent and legal custodian, pursuant to the Ohio Revised Code.

For further questions and/or inquiries about grandparents rights in Ohio, contact the family law attorneys at Slater & Zurz LLP by calling 1-800-297-9191 or send us a Blog Message to schedule a time to talk that is convenient for you.

To learn more about grandparents rights and other family law matters, please visit www.dissolutionanddivorce.com.

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About slaterzurz

Slater & Zurz LLP is an Ohio law firm of highly experienced and respected attorneys. Over the last 40 years, we have developed a reputation for getting positive results for clients. We've been trusted with handling over 20,000 personal injury cases and our clients have received more than $120,000,000.

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  1. What Rights Do Grandparents Have Answered What Rights Do Grandparents Have - December 15, 2012

    […] */ /* */ Legal Rights for Grandparents Caring for Their Grandchildren: Caretaker Affidavit and Power of Attor…Legal Rights for Grandparents Caring for Their Grandchildren: Caretaker Affidavit and […]

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