On behalf of The Walters Law Group, Ltd. posted in Family Law on Monday, November 11, 2013.
A new study shows that the face of caregivers is changing. This may be in part to a higher divorce rate among Illinois couples and other couples throughout the country. More children are living with their grandparents, compared to previous decades.
The revelation was made through a study that researched the changes in American society. With the increase in divorce and remarriage, grandparents have been fulfilling childcare roles. According to the study, 13 percent of the population in the United States is aged 65 and older. These individuals are generally better educated, more financially secure and expected to live longer than individuals in this age group from previous generations. Additionally, 7.8 million children live with their grandparents with 1 million children living with a grandparent with neither biological parent living in the same household. Grandparents serve as the primary caregiver in many of these households. About 33 percent of grandmothers who reside with their grandchildren are the primary caregiver in the household. The recession of the first decade of the 21st century corresponded with an increase in grandparents living with their grandchildren.
Statistically, African-American and Hispanic grandmothers are more likely to live with their grandchildren, compared to white grandmothers. Additionally, African-American grandmothers more often assume the role as primary caregivers, compared to Hispanic or Caucasian grandmothers. Grandparents may serve as an important safety net for their children and grandchildren, swooping in to help when a marriage dissolves or a single parent can’t support the family unit by themselves. Whether grandparents reside with grandchildren varies across grandparents’ race, ethnicity, socioeconomic level, gender and family structure.
When grandparents step into a parental role, they may have questions about their legal rights. A family aw attorney may be able to help these grandparents by offering advice on their rights as their role of caregiver in their grandchildren’s lives.
Source: The Washington Post, “As families become more complicated, more grandparents care for kids, study says“, Tara Bahrampour, November 05, 2013