Do I Have The Right To Visit My Grandchildren?
Your grandchildren are an important part of your life. You love them, and you want to be involved in their lives. It seems only natural that you would be allowed to visit them. Under Indiana law, your role as their grandparent is not always supported. However, this is not always true.
You might have to fight to spend time with your grandchildren. Our legal team at Allen Wellman McNew Harvey, LLP, can work to support your grandparenting role and visitation.
Visitation Rights Can Be Difficult, But Not Impossible, To Obtain
You are best situated to be awarded visitation if your grandchild’s parent, who was related to you, has passed away. In some circumstances, visitation can be ordered if your grandchild’s parents’ marriage ended in divorce or if your grandchild was born out of wedlock. In the case of a child born out of wedlock, the issue of paternity is crucial.
Some Indiana Laws Restrict Your Visitation Rights
Often, child custody and parenting time disputes can threaten your access to your grandchild. It is usually best to try to reach a visitation agreement with the children’s parents or guardians, but that is not always possible. Family situations are all unique and hostilities might affect everyone, including you.
You will be required to demonstrate that you have had meaningful contact or that you have tried to have contact but were denied. You will need to establish that you are strongly bonded to your grandchild. The child could possibly be privately interviewed by the judge as to their wishes, but this is case-specific. Most importantly, it will be crucial for you to demonstrate that visitation is in your grandchild’s best interest.
How Will The Court Decide My Rights As A Grandparent?
Before deciding if you can visit, the court will consider several things.
- Were you involved in their lives or did you try to be involved?
- Is the visitation in the child’s best interest?
- Is there family conflict, and if so, why?
- Does the parent or parents want the visitation to occur? What is the basis of the parent’s desire?
- Might your visitation be harmful to the child?
Sympathetic Lawyers Working To Establish Your Rights
If your rights as a grandparent are being challenged anywhere in Indiana, we will work to build your case. Conversely, we are also experienced in representing parents who wish to contest visitation. Contact our trusted and sympathetic lawyers in our Greenfield office at 866-958-6354 or via our contact page.