Grandparent Visitation Rights

Grandparents usually have a special relationship with their grandchildren.  However, in some cases, grandparents have to do far more than be caring, loving grandparents.  When parents have problems that prevent them from taking care of their kids, grandparents are usually the first relatives a parent will turn to in his/her time of need. 

What happens to the grandparents' relationship with a child when a parent suddenly returns after a few years, then demands that the grandparents retreat to their earlier role?

Grandparent Visitation Rights

If you are a grandparent who took on a long-term parental role with a grandchild, there are certain grandparent family rights that the parent can not deny you. 

Even though parents are usually presumed to be fit and able to care for their children without interference, courts realize that those who have relied on grandparents as substitute parents must allow those grandparents to continue to be in the child's life in order to avoid harm to the child placed in the middle.

Grandparents Rights Interpretation: Expansive vs Narrow

Some states have an expansive interpretation on grandparent visitation rights while others take a narrow interpretation on grandparent visitation rights.  A Supreme Court case establishing grandparent visitation states that grandparents indeed have visitation rights when they have acted in a parental capacity to a child.  The parent has to prove that contact with the grandparents will be detrimental to the child involved.

Visitation rights law also allows grandparents to file for visitation rights after a divorce if they fear that one parent will try to sever a preexisting relationship with grandchildren.

Grandparent Visitation Rights Attorney Help

This article is merely a guide, not a substitute for legal advice.  An experienced family law attorney in your state will be an invaluable resource in helping you get a desirable visitation decision from the court.

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