My godchild's parents passed away recently (car crash) and never made a will.
It was always said that I would be taking care of the baby if anything happened.
My question is what do i do now? what can i do?
Im taking care of her now, but i don't want her to change homes every so often because one of her familly decides to take her because they "just want to". I want what's best for her.
Please let me know. Im also in Canada if that makes a difference. I looked up online but most of the stuff is for US only.
if you are taking care of her right now, I would contact a family lawyer and have some papers drawn up to seek custody. You need to go to court and have guardianship legally given to you. Then if the family wants to contest it they will also need to seek a family lawyer and go to court and get it sorted out.
Legally if they didn't make a will then her family are entitled to look after her. When a child is left orphaned, and their parents didn't make a will, child services (or whatever it is called where you are) are bound by law to look after the child. They will usually seek out any family close by who can look after the child. If no one in the family is able to, or no one wants to, then it's up to child services to find an alternative - usually a foster family, and then adoption. Unless you are a registerd foster carer you won't be allowed to foster this child, but you can apply to adopt them. However, that can be a lenghty process, and usually the child will have to be in foster care soon.
Other than contacting a lawyer/solicitor I'm not sure what else to advise you. But make sure you gte legal advice - you don't want to end up on the wrong side of the law just for helping out a child!
Since you are already taking care of her and you are her godmother, it helps. Right now, the NOK (next of kin) which is probably grandmother or auntie, is usually who the child is placed with when this occurs, by the MCFD ministry of children & family services. I would suggest looking in your phone book and contacting your local MCFD (are they the ones who brought the child to you?). You will want to consult a family lawyer asap. It sounds like the family is cooperative for now, but they could change their mind?
Ours laws here in Canada are as you already know a bit different than the UK + US, you'll need to speak with a lawyer personally and not the internet. The MCFD will also be able to guide you in dealing with short-term placement issues.
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