As a parent, you may dream about the day your child welcomes a little one of their own into the world. When this day arrives, you may be over the moon, excited to see the person your grandchild becomes. However, when your child is no longer with their partner, whether this is due to death, separation, or divorce, your visits with your grandchild may stop. If this is the case, you may wonder whether or not you can receive visitation rights as a grandparent. The following blog explores what you must know about these difficult times and how New Jersey child visitation attorneys can help you during these challenging times.
Who Can Apply for Child Visitation Orders?
In New Jersey, very few people can apply for visitation rights. This list is limited to parents, siblings, and grandparents of the child. Unfortunately, all other relatives are unable to apply for visitation rights to see a child they are related to.
It’s important to understand that recovering visitation rights can be challenging for grandparents. Unfortunately, if your grandchild’s parent does not let you see them, it can be emotionally difficult to deal with. However, you must prove that it’s not only in the best interest of the child to spend time with you, but failure to do so will actually cause harm to the child.
What Should Grandparents Know About this Process?
When you file a petition with the court for visitation rights, the court will generally order you and the parent to go to mediation first to attempt to remedy the issues. If this is not possible, you will proceed to a court hearing. Generally, the judge assigned to the case will consider a number of factors, including, but not limited to, the following:
- What the grandparent(s) relationship with the child was like prior to the death, divorce, or separation
- Whether visitation with the grandparent(s) was regularly established
- If the child lived with the grandparent(s) for a period of time
- The relationship between the child parent(s) and the grandparent(s)
- Whether or not this is a history of or allegations of abuse against the parent(s)
- How long the child has gone without speaking to their grandparent(s)
It’s important to note that if you were the child’s guardian for a period of time, you will more than likely be granted visitation rights.
As you can see, there are many factors that impact the outcome of this crucial decision. That’s why you must connect with an experienced family law attorney from Haber Silver Russoniello & Dunn to discuss your circumstances. Our compassionate team understands how important seeing your grandchild is to you, which is why we will work tirelessly to fight for the best possible outcome for you during these difficult circumstances. Contact our team today to discuss the details of your case with a member of our dedicated firm to learn how we can assist you.