Bond Schoeneck & King PLLC is partnering with Volunteer Legal Services Project on an initiative that focuses on Grandparent Kinship cases. BS&K attorneys have already accepted five cases where drug addiction/overdose, alcoholism, prison, and similar circumstances have made the birth parents inappropriate caregivers, and family members step up to officially take the reins.
Curtis Johnson recently spent 30+ hours helping a client (maternal grandmother) and her husband who had been taking care of two pre-school children after the children’s mother passed away from a heroin overdose. The heartbreak in reviewing the facts reminds us just how difficult 2016 was for some people, including an innocent two-year-old and four-year-old.
Earlier this year, the client was asked by the parents to take care of the children for a while because they were unable to provide for them – as both were on heroin. Child Protective Services was involved, finding the father was not providing adequate care.
With the assistance of Mr. Johnson, the court proceedings took place and the father entered a treatment program and moved in with his parents. He obtained primary custody of the children, and Mr. Johnson was able to get his client visitation for a full weekend each month.
See what I mean about complicated?
Four more custody issues have been assigned to BS&K attorneys Franz Wright, Ed Hourihan, Theresa Rusnak, and Mary Moore. Although the firm typically has few Family Court interactions, the Grandparent Kinship Pro Bono Signature Project is allowing firm attorneys to make a difference and support each other as they help fulfill a significant community need.
All of the pending custody issues involve a grandmother (often maternal) who has already been involved in raising the children. Some of them involve drug addicted parents, potential kidnappings, violence in the home setting, and even murder of a custodial parent.
Thank you Bond Schoeneck & King for taking on these tough cases.