How to Handle Sibling Adoption or Custody

Note: The DearEsq free 'ask a lawyer' site is offered as a free informational service to the public and is not intended as legal advice. Laws vary from state-to-state, and in addition every situation is unique, and relevant facts may not be known. The answer to the question posed below may not apply to in your state or to your situation. For legal advice in your state and your situation you should consult with an attorney in your state who is familiar with the rules and laws in your state.

“I am a 15 year old male, I am currently living with my father. We only have 3 people residing in the home.

One of them being myself, my father, and a roommate that my father rents the room to for a majority of the rent.

So here is my situation. about two years ago my mother went to another man, and I was told she was dead. Not knowing she was still alive, I started to skip school and get in trouble, luckily a truency officer stopped me while it was too late, and sent me to a Boys’ Home for trouble young men, and I fitted the definition perfectly. I spent a good 14-15 months there and learned my lesson and decided on my behalf to come back home, and as long as my father agreed, I was a free young man!

So that evening I decided to come home, I was there! I thought it was a dream come true… Around that time my brother was still living with us at 18, and had a girlfriend that was 17 staying over on an average five of the seven days of the week. In which I didn’t mind, considering I absolutely LOVED Her company.

My brother moved out for an unknown reason, and it was a HUGE debate. He later moved in with his girlfriend and with her parents, which who are wonderful people also. I later found out from my brother himself that he moved out because from the age 16-18 he had to pay the bills more so often my father did.

Lets backtrack a little- Four years ago my father was ran over by a car on the job. Completely destroying his lower body. He rehabilitated and he can walk with ease, just not for a long period of time. He filed for disability and 4 years later still has no clue if he is going to EVER get it, Therefore leaving us with no income, the only money that ever comes in is $380 a month, which is supposed to go to myself and my brother, and its from my mother. We never knew this was from my mother because we thought she was dead. I later found out that it was all a story worked up so my dad could get the money every month and not let us know about it.

So here I am now, being my father next victim, I am 15 years old, I don’t have a job and I am afraid to get a work permit from my school, because if I were to get a job I know I would have to support my father and myself, leaving me with working 60 hours a weak and getting no money out of it, just like what happened to my brother. I do get recreation money from family, most of my family are filthy rich and have they’re pockets lined. My father in the past has asked just about all my family members for loans, and has never payed any of them back. I only leave the house when it is going to see a family member. Whenever I see my Uncle William, he finds out how to sneak money in my pocket, knowing I won’t accept it. I later come home that day to find $100-250 dollars in my pocket. I try to keep it secret from my father, only because he will ask for it, or steal it from me. And he finds out every time, and he KNOWS That he will get it somehow weather he has to steal it, or threaten me. So making it a bit less “Hostile” For myself, I hand over every last dollar I get.

I have recently received a check from the Boys’ Home, The whole 14-15 months I was there, I worked my tail off, and I had finally gotten the money I deserved!!! I was so excited! It was a very high amount, and I was ready to go shopping and take this one girl I like out to a movies and to eat. But my father had found out about the money and I had to chip it over. So I finally saw it… The SAME Exact thing is going to happen to me if I don’t leave. My brothers girlfriend saved his life by taking him in. I was told all this time she was a bad person, but now I know that if it weren’t for her, my brother would still be the same working mule that was in my fathers control, now I am becoming that… And I don’t want that to happen, I still have 3 years to move out and thats just too long of a wait. My brother and his girlfriend which are later getting married said that if it comes down to it, they will take custody of me. They have normal income, and they have more than enough to support not only themselves but myself also.

I got $160 dollars from my aunt the other day, and that was supposed to go to my school supplies… Now I have no money for school supplies and no new school clothes. I’ve been wearing the same clothes as I was four years ago.

My mother and father are separated, they do not have a divorce.

How would my adult brother take legal action to have custody over me?

Please help! My future is held in your hands and my situation will only get better with a response, I know your a busy person and you probably get a handful of these kind of e-mails a day… But I BEG OF YOU.

PLEASE HELP ME!!! I DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO!”Your very best bet would be to contact an advocate or counsellor at the boys home, and tell them your situation and ask for help. You might also consider having someone help you track down your mother, to see if she would attempt to get custody of you (which would be easier than your brother taking custody of you).

Question: You could also consider calling the local child protective services agency where you are; they may or may not get involved, but they should at least have some suggestions for other resources. Certainly telling a child that their mother has died, when she has not, is a serious form of child abuse.
Good luck!