Worcester, MA asked in Divorce, Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Massachusetts

Q: My ex-husband moved away when our children were young, what grounds does my new husband have?

My new husband has been their primary caregiver since my daughter was 3 and my son was 1.5, I am having a will written, (4 + years as of right now) would my husband have any grounds to keep the children should something happen to me? I would like the verbiage to read for them to stay in our home with my husband and continue pre-arranged visits with my EX.

I know my ex husband is the biological parent, but he up and left his children for no reason, and has no relationship with them.

At what age could my children say they wanted to stay with my husband? Also at what age can my children say they do not want to travel to stay with their biological father for 2 weeks in the summer?

1 Lawyer Answer
Lillian J. LaRosa
Lillian J. LaRosa
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • Woburn, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: The best way to deal with the biological father not potentially having custody of the minor children at your death would be to see if he would agree and your husband would agree to a step parent adoption. If the children are older than 14 then there should also be input from them as to their feeling about stepfather adopting them . Otherwise you can express that you want your current husband to be the children's guardian and he would need to file a guardianship petition which may or may not be allowed by the Court. The best interests and safety and well-being of the children is of importance in this determination, so that if there is a problem with biological father's ability to care for the children then the Court would be less inclined to go with the biological parent.

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