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Child Custody For Grandparents and Others in Pennsylvania

In 2018, a law was passed that expanded the right of grandparents to file for custody of their grandchildren, if a grandparent is willing to assume responsibility for the child or the child is at risk, even if the grandparent has not previously taken care of the child for an extended period of time. The parents do not have to be separated (if married) for a grandparent to file for custody.

In addition to grandparents, beginning on July 3, 2018, other individuals who have assumed or are willing to assume responsibility for the child may also file for custody if neither parent has any form of care and control of the child. The Court will consider if the individual has a sustained, substantial, and sincere interest in the welfare of the child as evidenced by the nature, quality extent and length of the involvement by the individual in the child’s life (eg: a step-parent, a relative).

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