How Can I Get Temporary Guardianship of My Nephew in Missouri?

Question by sarahfdavis06: How can I get temporary guardianship of my nephew in Missouri?
My sister and my 10 month old nephew have been living with me for the last two months because my sister left the baby’s abusive father. He was not abusive to the baby, only my sister. She was granted a full order of protection and the father was given visitation rights of every other weekend.

My sister has been talking to the father via Facebook and he has manipulated her into coming to his house. She did and it was suppose to be just a one night thing so they could ‘carve pumpkins’ with the baby. I fear that she is not coming back to my house and I need to know if there is anything I can do to get temporary guardianship of my nephew to ensure that he is safe?

More details: My sister has been extremely neglectful of my nephew while here at my home. I have taken on the role if the main caretaker of my nephew. She has ignored him (he keeps falling off the bed with her sitting right there and the bed is about four feet off the ground); she hasn’t been consistent with feeding him food (just tries to give him bottles all day); she doesn’t like to change his diapers often to try and save on diaper costs; she ignores him if he gets hurt. I understand that all of this may not be a reason to take guardianship of my nephew. But, I know that if she goes back to his father, it will be all of this as well as violence; drug use; alcohol abuse; instability; they are unable to (or unwilling to) financially support my nephew with their income (my sister receives $ 234 per month in welfare; the father receives about $ 850 per month in unemployment; their bills are never paid; they have to get low-income help with rent and utilities almost every month; I believe, but this is just a guess, that the father is stealing electronics, which he’s known for stealing and robbing people, and selling them for money; while my sister has been at my house, I have been providing most of my nephews things that he needs).

Ever since my sister has been staying with me, my nephew has become accustomed to me caring for him, when he cries or gets hurt, he comes to me. I have bonded with him incredibly over the past few months and I don’t believe that my sister is a stable parent, even while she is here. I want to be able to protect him and keep him safe and cared for. I don’t want this to be a permanent solution (unless it ends up needing to be); I don’t at all want to keep my nephew from his mom or dad. I just know that I can be (and have been) a better caregiver for my nephew.

As I said before, I live in Missouri. Also, I have a five year old son that just started kindergarten, in case you need to know if I am experienced in parenting.

Best answer:

Answer by Esther
By hiring a lawyer and allowing him or her to do his/her job.

Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments!



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One Response to How Can I Get Temporary Guardianship of My Nephew in Missouri?

  • Sean M says:

    This could be incredibly hard.
    First of all, you would have to file a report with the Department of Social Services (Child Protective Services) or your local police department.
    Second, the case would have to be justified by a social worker that the child is in danger. Then the child would be removed from the parent’s custody.
    Here’s where the problem could be…most likely, he will be placed in foster care until a custody hearing can occur, which could take weeks. Most likely, you wouldn’t get custody, the state would since your sister lives with you.
    I would ask her to sign over her parental rights. That’s basically the only way you would get custody.

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