Grandparents' Rights

questions & answers

Question: My mother was served papers from the other Grandparent. I was never served since I don't live there anymore. The grandparent filed for grandparent rights and according to Family Court Case Information - Case History it says "DEFAULT/REGARDING PETITION FOR GRANDPARENT VISITATION". I was never served and just found out about it today. There were summons in May. What do I do now? I don't want it to go into default and her get what she wants.

Answer: The superior court may grant visitation rights to a person other than the legal or paternal parents of a minor child if it is found to be in the best interest of the child. If the parents of the child have had dissolution of marriage for at least three months, than visitation may be awarded to either the grandparents or great-grandparents. Any petition by the grandparents or great-grandparents must be supported with an affidavit and detailed facts supporting their claim. The petitioner must provide notice of the petition and affidavits, along with any other attachments to all of the following:
1.    The child's legal parents.
2.    A third party who possesses legal decision-making authority over the child or visitation rights.
3.    The child's guardian or guardian ad litem.
4.    A person or agency that possesses physical custody of the child or claims legal decision-making authority or visitation rights concerning the child.
5.    Any other person or agency that has previously appeared in the action.
Furthermore, the court will grant visitation to the grandparents or great-grandparents if deemed logistically possible and appropriate granted that the child spends time or lives with a parent that the grandparent claims right of access to. The courts will also consider the parent’s opinion when deciding whether or not to grant visitation. Some of the facts that the courts will consider include:
1.    The historical relationship, if any, between the child and the person seeking visitation.
2.    The motivation of the requesting party seeking visitation.
3.    The motivation of the person objecting to visitation.
4.    The quantity of visitation time requested and the potential adverse impact that visitation will have on the child's customary activities.
5.    If one or both of the child's parents are deceased, the benefit in maintaining an extended family relationship.
For further consultation a lawyer can provide guidance through the trial process.

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QUESTIONS

  • My mother was served papers from the other Grandparent. I was never served since I don't live there anymore. The grandparent filed for grandparent rights and according to Family Court Case Information - Case History it says "DEFAULT/REGARDING PETITION FOR GRANDPARENT VISITATION". I was never served and just found out about it today. There were summons in May. What do I do now? I don't want it to go into default and her get what she wants.

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