Do Grandparents Have Rights in a Divorce?

Posted on December 6, 2021

Divorce is often a difficult time for everyone involved, including the grandparents. In some situations, grandparents are not permitted visitation with their grandchildren in the event of a divorce, parental termination of rights, or death of a parent. These situations often leave grandparents wondering how to maintain a relationship with their grandchildren and if they even have any rights. A family law attorney Greensboro NC can help answer any questions grandparents have regarding their visitation rights with their grandchildren.

Do Grandparents Have Rights in a Divorce?

Grandparents’ rights are neither guaranteed nor easy to obtain, but it can be done. First, grandparents wanting visitation should file a petition with the courts to grant them visitation rights with their grandchildren. In most cases, the law trusts the parents will have the best interest of the children in mind and allow visitation with their grandparents. However, it may be possible to file a visitation petition if the grandparents believe the custodial parent does not have the best interest in mind by preventing visitation.

For the courts to rule a grandparent-grandchild relationship to be substantial, it must be comparable to a parent or custodian relationship. For example, if grandchildren lived with the grandparents for several months and had developed a close relationship with one another.

Several things are considered before granting a grandparent visitation or custody rights during a divorce. Some of the questions asked and considered include:

  • Is the grandparent a fit and proper person to be around the grandchild?
  • Has visitation been unreasonably denied or restricted?
  • Is the parent unfit or incompetent?
  • Has the parent been missing for an extended period?
  • Has a parent died?
  • Has there been a divorce or legal separation among the parents?
  • Has the parent terminated their parental rights?
  • Is visitation with the grandparents in the best interest of the grandchild?
  • Is there a substantial relationship between the grandchild and the grandparents?

Tips for Grandparents During a Divorce

A divorce is stressful, and it is no surprise that grandparents experience high emotions for their adult children and grandchildren. Plus, there is the fear that a grandparent may never be able to see their grandchildren again. To help ensure you maintain visitation with your grandchildren, there are several things to do in addition to speaking with a divorce lawyer Greensboro. Here are some tips to help you during the divorce of your grandchildren’s parents:

  • Maintain a relationship with your grandchildren by having regular visits with them (if allowed). Additionally, be a source of reassurance during a difficult time in their lives.
  • Stay neutral, and don’t interfere with your grandchildren’s love for either of their parents.
  • Continue to maintain a positive relationship with your grandchildren’s other parent.
  • Be understanding that special occasions, such as birthdays and holidays, may not be the same due to visitation agreements between both parents.
  • Promote peace between everyone involved and remain calm at all times.
  • Please consult with a family law lawyer Greensboro to learn more about how grandparents can help ensure they maintain a relationship with their grandchildren.

How an Attorney Can Help

When seeking visitation with your grandchildren, it is best to consult a divorce attorney Greensboro NC. Your attorney can provide advice based on your particular situation and assist you in working out an agreement with the custodial parent. If needed, your North Carolina family attorney can file the necessary paperwork and help you pursue legal action in the courts.

If you are a grandparent seeking visitation with your grandchildren, make an appointment to speak with one of the attorneys at the Law Office of Mercedes O. Chut. A Greensboro family law attorney can help you learn more about your rights and, if desired, file all necessary paperwork to get you the rights to see your grandchildren.