Do I have Visitation Rights as a Grandparent?

Family Lawyer New York, NY

Do I have Visitation Rights as a Grandparent?

Family Lawyer New York, NYAs a grandparent, you are likely devoted to your grandchildren. But what happens when your grandchildren’s parents get divorced? You will still want to see your grandchildren, but how will that work? It wasn’t that long ago that grandparents did not have visitation rights to their grandchildren. Thankfully, things have changed, and with the help of a family lawyer in New York, NY from Okun, Oddo & Babat, P.C., you can protect your rights. Indeed, children and their grandparents should not have to suffer the pain of separation just because of the parent’s divorce.

Grandparents’ Rights to Visitation

Today, the visitation rights of grandparents and other non-parents such as caregivers, stepparents, and foster parents are governed by the state. This gives the non-parents the legal right to visit the child. A family lawyer in New York, NY from Okun, Oddo & Babat, P.C. can clarify your rights based on your specific situation.

Every state has established guidelines focused on visitation rights for grandparents. It was determined that grandparents were legally permitted to keep in touch with their grandchildren. However, the courts will consider whether or not a parent wishes to limit the visitation of a grandparent. A family lawyer in New York, NY from Okun, Oddo & Babat, P.C. can present your case to the court and argue for your and your grandchildren’s best interests.

Restrictive Statutes

There are restrictive statutes in less than half of the US concerning visitation rights of grandparents. Sometimes, a grandparent can only have visitation rights for specific reasons; for example, if one parent is deceased.

More than half of the states have what is known as permissive laws that grant a grandparent permission to visit their grandchildren even if both parents are still alive. The court will ultimately rule in favor of the well-being of the child.

Sometimes, parents attempt to restrict the visitation rights of the grandparents. If this happens, the grandparents can take the parents to court in order to enforce their rights. If the parents are denying the visitation rights of the grandparents because of abuse concerns, the grandparents will have to make their case in court to lift that limitation. If this describes your situation, a family lawyer in New York, NY from Okun, Oddo & Babat, P.C. may be able to represent you in court.

Protecting Visitation Rights

If you go to court to preserve your visitation rights, be aware that the judge is expected to protect the best interests of the child. The judge may ask if you have any health issues. They may also ask if you have ever been in trouble with the law in the past. You may also be asked if you:

  • Smoke.
  • Drink excessively.
  • Have a disability that may endanger the child or be unable to properly care for them.

If you have a disability, the court may require you to have supervised visits for the safety of the child.

A family law attorney can discuss all your options as a grandparent. Consult a family lawyer New York, NY families turn to for help from Okun, Oddo & Babat, P.C. and discover how we can help you maintain relationships with your grandchildren.