Las Vegas, NV asked in Family Law for Utah

Q: How do I begin to file for a petition of custody for my nieces children?

I would like to gain sole custody of my nieces children based on her negligence, filthy living conditions, mental abuse, etc.

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1 Lawyer Answer
Clinton R. Brimhall
Clinton R. Brimhall
  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • Licensed in Utah

A: It sounds like you would need to file a petition alleging abuse and neglect with the juvenile court in the county where the children live. The relevant statutes are found in Title 78A of the Utah Code, Chapters 1, 3, & possibly 5. Seeking a lawyer's assistance would be wise.

As a practical matter, you should be aware that termination of parental rights is viewed as an extreme measure. Unless both parents of the children are cooperative, you are looking at an uphill battle. The juvenile court will look to rehabilitate the parents. If one of the parents is fit to be a parent and desires to be a parent, that parent will likely be awarded custody before you are awarded custody. I realize the best interests of the children are at stake, here. But, you may wish to consider other options that will prove helpful to the children before initiating legal proceedings.

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