Sadly, contentious or difficult divorces often leave grandparents struggling to see their beloved grandchildren. Under California law, a grandparent can ask the court for reasonable visitation rights to see a grandchild. Be sure to schedule a consultation with a trusted family lawyer to determine your best legal options. Here is a look at grandparents’ visitation rights:
When Can a Grandparent Ask for Visitation Rights?
In California, a grandparent can ask for visitation rights when the parents are legally separated or obtain a divorce. In order for a grandparent to have legal standing, he or she must have a pre-existing relationship with the child that has engendered a bond. That means that the grandparent should have both established a bond with the child and that the court believes it is in the child’s best interests to continue the relationship.
Can I Ask for Visitation if the Parents are Married?
In general, grandparents ask for visitation rights when a couple is divorced, but there are exceptions to the rule. For example, grandparents can ask for visitation if the parents are still married but living separately, if one parent’s whereabouts are unknown, or if the child does not live with either parent.
How Do I Ask for Visitation in Court?
A grandparent must file paperwork with the court. There are no specific official forms for this purpose, so your best bet is to work with a family lawyer who can guide you through the necessary legal steps. When you fill out your paperwork, you will need to explain the type of visitation schedule you want, your relationship with the child, and other factors.
Moreno Family Law is proud to offer a wide range of family law services to clients in San Jose and beyond. Whether you want to obtain legal visitation rights to see your grandchildren when the parents divorce or legally separate or you need an attorney who will negotiate the terms of your child custody arrangement, our family lawyers are here to meet all your needs. Give us a call at (408) 266-9011 today.