It is not uncommon for grandparents to play an active role in the lives of not only their children, but also their grandchildren. This can create complications, however, when relationships between a child’s parents sour, in which case, grandparents could find themselves barred from seeing their grandchildren. Recognizing that the grandparent-grandchild relationship can have significant repercussions on a child, Illinois courts are willing to address grandparent visitation during custody proceedings. These kinds of proceedings do, however, require familiarity with specific aspects of Illinois law, so if you are seeking visitation with your grandchild or believe that visitation would not be in your child’s best interests, it is important to speak with an experienced Naperville, IL grandparents’ rights attorney who can walk you through your legal options.
Parents have certain rights when it comes to their children. In most cases, courts are not allowed to interfere with these rights unless a child is being harmed. There are exceptions, however, to this general rule, in which case a court could be willing to step in and order visitation with a child’s grandparents. This is only an option when the grandparent in question is able to demonstrate that visitation is in a child’s best interests.
Grandparents who want court-ordered time with their grandchildren must file a written petition with the court and eventually demonstrate that the parents’ denial of visitation is not only unreasonable but also causes the child to suffer physical or emotional harm. In addition to this requirement, the petitioner will also need to prove that:
Even when a grandparent is able to meet this burden, however, a court could still decide that visitation is not appropriate based on an assessment of the following factors:
These kinds of cases tend to be not only confusing or stressful for a child, but legally complicated. Please call our office today to learn more about how our legal team can help with your case.
If you are being barred from having contact with your grandchildren, or you believe that visitation with a grandparent is not in your child’s best interests, please call 630-953-3000 to speak with one of the dedicated Naperville grandparents' rights attorneys at J. Aldrich Law, P.C. about your legal options.