Grandparent’s Custody and Visitation Rights

Grandparent's Custody and Visitation Rights
Photo Credit: Tin Fulton Walker and Owen

Family law decisions are complex and varied. Custody, visitation, and divorce are all matters that have to be dealt with individually. One thing is certain: grandparents raising grandchildren should take precautions to plan ahead prior to the need for a family law decision. The custody and visitation rights of grandparents are not resolved without assistance from family law professionals. Just as with any other family law matter, it’s best to speak to a professional who is focused on the area of child custody, and a decision is needed.

Grandparents generally want to be in the lives of their grandchildren. The decisions they make will affect them throughout their lifetime. It is difficult to know where to start a conversation on custody and visitation. It has been said that any child of ours is our child. This means that every family has ties to each other. Grandparents usually want the best for their grandchildren, and they may feel they have no other choice but to get involved. Custody and visitation are two legal parenting issues that are unique to grandparents raising their grandchildren.

What are Grandparent Child Custody Rights?

Grandparent Child Custody is the right of a grandparent to be able to make decisions on behalf of their grandchild. There are several reasons why a grandparent may want to seek custody of their grandchildren. The most common reason is that they want the custody of their grandchildren to be with them. Parents may not feel they should give up the control they have because they want to provide the best care possible for their grandchildren. A parent may not feel that they are fit to be a parent and give up the control they have over their children. Grandparents may also want to step in because their parents are handicapped. They may not have the intellectual capacity to make decisions on behalf of their children.

In order to ask for custody, grandparents must meet specific requirements. The requirements are similar to those used in a divorce situation where custody of a child is in question. In order for grandparents to seek custody, many factors must be considered and evaluated by a judge. One thing that must be proven is the grandparent-grandchild relationship. This may also include if the child’s parent is deceased. The relationship that exists between a grandparent and their grandchildren must be proven by documentation of the past. Any grandparent seeking custody of their grandchildren will need to prove this.

What are Grandparent Visitation Rights?

Visitation rights can be similar to custody rights in that they provide an opportunity for the grandparent to make decisions for the child. Visitation rights are not given to a grandparent unless there is a valid and existing relationship between the grandparent and the child. There are several factors that must be considered by a judge when deciding on visitation rights. These include the past history of a relationship, if this has been established in court, or if there is an ongoing relationship, such as staying in contact or making plans for the future of the child. Visitation rights can be made in a divorce, custody, or adoption.

What is Grandparent Child Custody and Visitation?

When a divorce proceeding is at hand, it is imperative that the court recognize the importance of a relationship between the grandparent and grandchild. The rights parents have to their children also extend to their parents. This means visitation and custody must be considered just as much as child support, if not more. The court will look closely at this relationship to ensure that it is beneficial for all involved parties. The court will take into consideration the age of the child and if they are mature enough to have a relationship with their grandparents. The court will also look at any visitation arrangements that are already in place in order to determine if this is best for the child or not.

Custody and visitation rights are just as important as other family law decisions made during a divorce case or an adoption case. In some cases, it is just as important because the grandparents may be raising their grandchildren. The goal of child custody is to ensure that the child is allowed contact with important persons in their lives. This can include grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins. The importance of the grandparent is invaluable. In most cases, the grandparents may be the primary caretakers of the grandchildren. This gives them an upper hand in seeking custody or visitation rights over other family members.


Grandparents are placed in a unique position when raising grandchildren. Grandparents must have a great understanding of the laws relating to child custody and visitation rights before they take on this responsibility for their grandchild. Once a grandparent has gained knowledge of these laws, it can be helpful to seek professional help from family law lawyers who have experience in child custody and visitation issues.

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