Can My Mother-In-Law Refuse to Return My Children?

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‘In 2009 we signed a POA for the Care of Minor Children and sent kids to temporarily live with Grandma. At the time of signing she attached “termination criteria”. We have met all of the agreements except obtaining my drivers license and based on this she is refusing to return the kids. My questions are first, does the “Termination Criteria” trump my ability to revoke at any time even prior to a stated ending date. Secondly, can she use the POA to file for custody under abandonment without our knowledge since she has been caring for the kids for more than 6 months. She is not above claiming inability to contact us for consent to custody. The POA form was a legal doc purchased online, the termination criteria was hand typed but was notarized with POA.’

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

You need to *immediately* speak with a good family law attorney in the state in which your mother-in-law lives. It is unusual, to say the least, for someone to give their children to someone else, along with a document they purchased online, and, sadly, it is not at all unusual for a grandparent to attempt to keep control of their grandchildren if they feel they can do a better job at raising them then can the parents. Unfortunately, this is the outcome when you try to resort to cheap, do-it-yourself measures when your children’s well being is on the line, and by consulting a free online website, instead of an attorney, you are doing it again. These are your children, for goodness sakes, get a lawyer, and get them back.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.