Who is considered a Guardian in Alberta Family law?
At Verhaeghe Law Office – we often get asked how Alberta’s laws define guardianship or who is the respectful guardian in child custody disputes. While the guardian of a child has a legal responsibility and right to make decisions on behalf of that child – it’s not always as clear cut as you think especially in child custody or family law disputes.
What is a guardian?
The Family Law Act in Alberta indicates that a child’s biological or legally adoptive parent is by default their guardian if:
- He/she has acknowledged they are the child or children’s parent;
- He/she has demonstrated an intent to assume the responsibility of being a guardian for that child or children within one year of finding out about the pregnancy or if the parent did not know about the pregnancy and birth of the child.
Only the parent of a child or children can become a guardian. However, if an adult who is not the child’s biological parent has lived with the child for at least six months - they can certainly make a request (or application) to be legally declared a guardian of the child. If for any reason only one person fits the criteria to be a child’s guardian then no other person will be added to the court order for the application.
How Does A Prospective Guardian Demonstrate Intent For Guardianship?
A prospective guardian can demonstrate they have the intention to resume guardianship of a child or children by demonstrating the following:
- Being legally married to the parent of the child/children or by marrying the parent after the child is born. In some instances, if you were previously married to the other parent but divorced within 300 days of the child or children being born you may still be eligible for guardianship
- Being in an adult interdependent relationship with the parent of the child or children when the child or children are born or becoming one after the child or children are born
- Entering into a binding agreement with the other parent to be a guardian to the child or children
- Living with the other parent for at least a year during the time the child or children are born
- Providing financial support voluntarily to the birth mother or to the child or children
For more information on how you can obtain guardianship for a child or children contact our law firm today and speak with a member of our legal team.
Contact our Alberta Family Lawyers Regarding Your Guardianship Legal Issues
If you or a loved one require the assistance of a family lawyer with respect to guardianship issues – contact our law firm today. We can represent families across Alberta on family law matters and have assisted thousands of Albertans on this already. With offices in Athabasca, Whitecourt and Edmonton – we make it a point to be readily available for our clients and keep them informed through the course of their legal case so they’re not left in the dark. This is part of the reason why we have great online reviews – as we make it a priority to provide excellent service to our clients.
Contact us today by dialing 587-410-2500 and book a consultation to speak with an Edmonton family lawyer.
Disclaimer: This blog is intended to act as a general overview on a commonly asked legal topic. It is not intended to act as legal advice, nor does it establish lawyer-client relationship in any way. If you require legal assistance on this topic, we suggest you consult with a family lawyer regarding your unique situation.