Divorce comes with a lot of consequences that are felt beyond the immediate family. Distant kin also suffers the aftermath when a marriage partnership dissolves, especially when children are involved. Grandparents are some of the people who may end up on the losing end regarding visitation. Contact between children and their grandparents is essential unless valid reasons exist why this shouldn’t happen.
Even though parents are the core players in child rearing, the involvement of the grandparents is fundamental for the kids’ well-being. The provisions allowed for grandparents when it comes to the visitation of their grandchildren and even custody vary from state to state. A lawyer in Staten Island who specializes in grandparents rights is a great investment for someone in such a situation. Learning a few basics of grandparents rights in New York provide ideas on how to proceed when dealing with a legal situation.
New York Grandparents Visitation Rights
NY has more restrictive grandparent’s visitation rights than most states, which makes the expertise of a legal professional that much more critical. Grandparents can only sue for visitation in Staten Island if they have the proper standing. One instance where a grandparent can sue, according to law, is when one parent dies. This provision is clear cut and usually doesn’t present any legal complications.
The other stipulation states that a grandparent can sue when circumstances indicate that there are “conditions which equity would see fit to intervene.” This provision covers extraordinary circumstances such as the interruption of custody, which refers to cases where a parent relinquished custody voluntarily, and the grandparents lived with the child for over 2 years. Other “extraordinary circumstances” that the courts may consider are abuse and neglect.
Child’s Best Interests
Whatever the grounds for a grandparent seeking visitation or custody, the court will always consider the best interests of the child. The courts evaluate various factors when determining a child’s best interests, and these include but not limited to;
• Potential education opportunities
• Morality of the parents
• Past conduct and behavior of the parents
• Emotional and physical needs of the minor
• Atmosphere at home
• The child’s wishes
• Reasons for parents limiting grandparents’ involvement
Before a court can award visitation rights to a grandparent, it must analyze the type of relationship that exists between the two parties. Grandparents with strong relationships with their grandkids stand better chances of getting visitation, but a myriad of other aspects come into play. The courts look at the level of contact between grandparents and their grandchildren.
If the visitation of the grandparents might affect the relationship between the child and parents, the courts will consider that as well. For example, if grandparents’ visitation will eat away the time children spend with their parents, the court might not give visitation. If the parents have made deliberate attempts to restrict visitation from the grandparents, the courts will want to know why and what bearing that has on the welfare of the child. A Staten Island attorney can help explain the existing relationship between you and your grandchildren.
Visitation rights for grandparents are not always straightforward, but that doesn’t mean you should give up on a relationship with your grandkids because active involvement in their lives is important. Hire a Staten Island grandparent’s rights lawyer with the prowess and skills to help you fight for your rights. Whether you are seeking visitation or custody, an experienced attorney knows how to approach different cases according to New York laws.