A child-custody case may be started by a parent, a step-parent (in certain circumstances), a person other than a parent (where the child is not in the physical custody of one of his or her parents), or a grandparent (in certain circumstances).
A grandparent of a deceased parent may initiate a child custody proceeding if:
1) the surviving parent was absent from the marital residence for more than one month without the now deceased parent knowing his or her whereabouts;
2) the surviving parent was incarcerated (in jail).
3) the surviving parent had received supervision or convicted of certain criminal conduct directed toward the deceased parent or the child.
Contact Maurice Holman at McDonough Casey Nelson Holman & Sullivan LLP for additional details regarding this or any other family law issue.