Fort Lee Grandparent’s Rights Lawyer
The parents of a child generally have the right under state law to make decisions relating to the care and well-being of that child. If parents end a relationship or divorce, the custody and visitation of a child commonly become a significant issue. Unfortunately, these disputes also affect the relationship children have with their grandparents.
Grandparents often have unique and strong relationships with their grandchildren that should be treasured. When separation, divorce, or other changes in the parents’ relationship occur, grandparents are often left with less time with their grandchildren. A Fort Lee grandparent’s rights lawyer could help fight for your rights as a grandparent under state law. Get in touch with a family law attorney at Moskowitz Law Group to learn more.
Grandparent’s Rights Statute
New Jersey Statutes §9:2-7.1 specifically addresses the visitation rights of grandparents. Common issues relating to this statute could involve either grandparents or grandparents-in-law. Issues typically arise when one parent passes away or loses custody or visitation rights, but the grandparents-in-law want to continue their relationship with the children.
For grandparents to enforce their rights under this state statute, they must file the required request with the court, which can be done with the help of a grandparent’s rights attorney. To succeed in obtaining visitation rights, the grandparent is required to prove that such visitation is in the child’s best interests, according to several factors, including:
- The child’s relationship with the grandparent
- The child’s parents’ or guardians’ relationship with the grandparent
- The amount of time since the child’s last contact with the grandparent
- The potential effect of the requested visitation on the relationship between the child and the parent or guardian with whom the child resides
- The visitation and custody arrangement between the parents
- The good faith of the grandparent filing the request
- Any prior physical, emotional, or sexual abuse or neglect by the grandparent
- Any other factors relating to the best interests of the child
One important factor that could help a grandparent is if they were previously a full-time caretaker of the child. The court generally accepts such evidence as sufficient to establish that visitation would be proper absent negative factors that would prevent the visitation. A knowledgeable Fort Lee grandparent’s rights attorney can evaluate a specific case to help determine the potential factors relating to the child’s best interests.
How to Begin the Process of Seeking Visitation Rights as a Grandparent
The process for a grandparent to seek visitation rights typically begins with the filing of a petition, which is a written request commonly filed with the court in which the child resides or the court that is responsible for the custody and visitation decisions. The petition generally includes a description of the prior and existing relationship between the child and the grandparent and a proposed schedule for the visitation time. If grandparents want to modify or enforce an existing order, they are also required to go through the court.
After the petition is filed, the grandparent must provide notice to the parents. Additionally, most courts encourage all parties to attempt to come to an agreement through mediation or other means of agreement. A well-versed grandparent’s rights lawyer in Fort Lee could help file the required paperwork and comply with the applicable state laws for seeking and enforcing a grandparent’s rights.
Contact a Fort Lee Grandparent’s Rights Attorney Today
When a situation has reached a point where you feel the need to seek assistance for your visitation rights as a grandparent, the circumstances are typically contentious. Court intervention is typically required to enforce a grandparent’s rights in regard to visitation, so it is crucial to work with a family law attorney who understands the nature of these cases.
An experienced Fort Lee grandparent’s rights lawyer could help guide you through the court process and fight for your rights as a grandparent. Schedule a free consultation today to get started.