Third-Party Custody

Issues of child custody often go beyond mothers and fathers and involve grandparents, aunts, uncles and other relatives who desire to raise a child. In situations where biological parents are unfit due to substance abuse or domestic abuse or unavailable due to incarceration, it is often in the children's best interests to be raised by a third party such as a grandparent, aunt or uncle.

Complex legal issues are at play in situations where custody is granted to someone other than the biological and/or legal parents. Issues of foster parent custody, third-party nonrelative custody, relative and grandparent custody, access rights, and other proceedings outside of marriage dissolution are the cutting-edge litigation of today's ever-changing definition of family.

At Berg, Debele, DeSmidt & Rabuse, P.A., our attorneys are comfortable operating on the cutting edge and have handled numerous influential cases in this evolving area of the law. If you are seeking custody of your grandchild, niece, nephew or foster child, you can benefit from our tremendous experience in juvenile court. We understand the intricacies of the system and have achieved success in extremely complex cases, including those involving parties from outside of Minnesota and cases triggered by Child Protective Services actions.

When a Third Party Can Pursue Child Custody

Family law in Minnesota strongly favors the rights of biological parents, unless one of the following factors exists:

  • A parent has abandoned, neglected or otherwise harmed a child in a way that makes continuing to live with the parent not in the child's best interest.
  • A child will likely be in physical or emotional danger by remaining with a biological parent.
  • Extraordinary circumstances such as the incarceration or death of a parent
  • Parents are not interested in caring for their child or are deemed unfit due to substance abuse or other detrimental issues.

Our attorneys have dedicated their practice to family law and possess the skills, knowledge and resources to handle the most complex issues, including difficult issues of jurisdiction when interested third parties and children live in different states. We excel at using our knowledge of the family court system to find creative solutions that protect the interests of children and allow positive family situations to emerge out of difficult circumstances.

If you are interested in pursuing third-party custody, we can answer your questions, evaluate your case and prepare you for the road ahead. Contact us today to schedule an appointment with one of our Minneapolis lawyers.