Jump to Navigation
Family Law Attorney

I provide experienced legal guidance in family law, divorce and special education law. I represent parents and families throughout western Massachusetts.

More grandparents get child custody during heroin epidemic

As most Massachusetts residents know, family courts are inclined to award child custody to a biological parent of a minor child when a family is split apart by divorce. In some cases, however, the best interests of a child lie elsewhere and not with the biological parents. Many times, third parties, such as grandparents and even distant relatives, family friends or even government agencies, are better options for awarding child custody. In all of these cases a parent has been deemed unfit by a family court, usually because of drug addiction, child abuse, mental incapacity or incarceration.

Recently, Massachusetts has seen a surge in drug addiction around the state. In addition to a rise in prescription drug abuse, there are growing numbers of heroin addicts. Since 2011, more heroin addicts have been admitted to hospital emergency rooms with drug overdoses, some of them fatal.

Many courts and state agencies have had to declare that chronic drug addicts with minor children are unfit to raise them, which means they need to be placed with more responsible adults. Grandparents around the state often have to step in and provide their grandchildren with a safe haven from their own children.

Many grandparents are now being awarded legal custody of a child on the basis of drug addiction. In fact, a majority of the custody cases presented in family courts are tied to drug abuse. These grandparents have also helped these addicted parents receive the treatment and care they need so that they can return to caring for their minor children.

Source: WNPR.org, "During Massachusetts heroin crisis, number of grandparents raising grandchildren grows," Jill Kaufman, June 3, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Contact Our Firm

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

Subscribe To This Blog's Feed Office Location

Claudette-Jean Girard, Attorney at Law
1380 Main Street,Suite 302
Springfield, MA 01103
Springfield Law Office Map

Phone: 413-315-5518
Toll Free: 877-622-6089
Fax: 413-886-0220
Contact the firm

Claudette-Jean Girard, Attorney at Law
P.O. Box 278
Monson, MA 01057
Get Directions

Lead Counsel Rated | LC