Understanding When Grandparents and Others Can Seek Custody

A public education campaign launched by the Pennsylvania Bar Association, the Pennsylvania Bar Insurance and Trust Fund, 27 county bar associations and additional partners.

As a result of the opioid epidemic sweeping the state, more and more grandparents, other family members and neighbors are becoming primary caregivers of minor children when parents are absent and cannot be located. Recent statistics from Grandfamilies.org show that 103,000 children in Pennsylvania live with a relative with no parent present and more than 88,000 grandparents are householders responsible for their grandchildren who live with them. 

Act 21 of 2018, which went into effect in Pennsylvania on July 3, 2018, expands who can request custody of a minor child when the parents cannot be located, especially in regard to grandparents, great-grandparents and other parties. 

Learn more about this change in Pennsylvania’s law and how it impacts caregivers seeking custody of children whose parents are unable or unwilling to raise them in this free, informational brochure, “Understanding When Grandparents and Others Can Seek Custody.”  To request a print copy, email [email protected]

Get more information on local and state resources  for grandparents and opioid addiction.

Read the news announcement.

News Conference Video



100 South Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101

Phone: 800-932-0311

Western Pennsylvania Office:

Heinz 57 Center, 339 Sixth Avenue, Suite 760
Pittsburgh, PA 15222 Phone: 412-914-8840