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Aunt fights for child custody of nephew

Drug abuse by hundreds of Ohio parents has resulted in displacement of their children. While some children are placed in the foster system, relatives of other children are fighting child custody battles to keep them with their families. One woman is seeking child custody of her 4-year-old nephew after his foster parent was recently arrested for child abuse.

The boy was born to a woman who had been abusing drugs for many years. An aunt, his mother's sister, brought the two of them home from the hospital after his birth. Although his mother was in and out of the house, he stayed with his aunt and uncle, both of whom were committed to raising him. However, it never occurred to them that they needed to take legal steps to ensure he stayed with them.

The boy's mother took him from her sister's house and left him in the care of another person, who left the boy alone. The Department of Child Services was called and he was placed in a foster home instead of with his aunt. During a supervised visit with his mother, the aunt saw bruises on the boy and took him to a hospital. Doctors felt the bruising was consistent with child abuse, and the foster mother was eventually detained. The boy was placed with another aunt, but the one with whom he had been previously living feels he would be better off with her and her husband.

Many states prefer placing a child with a relative, but that did not happen in this case. A child custody battle can be difficult and draining, but the benefit is well worth the fight. There may be many obstacles along the way, but a skilled Ohio attorney will assess the facts and present a sound case before the court.

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