Understanding Grandparent Rights in Family Law Cases

Understanding Grandparent Rights in Family Law Cases

Understanding Grandparent Rights in Family Law Cases

  • By: Marketing Team
  • 13 Jun 2024

When it comes to divorce, custody arrangements—both legal and physical—are some of the most challenging factors that impact the dynamic of the family. Children thrive in households where they are physically, financially, emotionally, and psychologically supported. In the state of Michigan, joint custody arrangements are the most common, and tend to promote the best outcome for families.

Divorce impacts the entire family, not just the parents and children—and grandparents are often left wondering what their rights are following a divorce. We are often approached by grandparents impacted by divorce who are seeking legal counsel as they navigate the family court system.

Common Questions From Grandparents

If you are the grandparent of a child or children whose parents have recently undergone a divorce, legal separation, or annulment in the Michigan family law court systems, you might be confused as to what your rights are.

Can you still get regular visitation with your grandchildren? How often will you be able to see them? Does this need to be worked out with lawyers involved, or can you reach a reasonable arrangement as a family?

When to Get the Courts Involved

In the best-case scenarios, you can arrive at an arrangement that works for everyone: both parents, kids, and grandparents. This is known as an informal arrangement and involves no interference by family law courts. However, in some difficult situations, grandparents may face hostility or estrangement from the parents as emotions run high during the divorce process.

If you are unable to reach an informal agreement, you have the right to take the necessary legal steps to acquire visitation time with your grandkids. The most common option is to file a motion with the court. This is an official request to a judge for grandparent visitation. This motion must be filed in the county where the court has continuing jurisdiction—which is not necessarily the same one where the grandchild lives.

If you are concerned about how to file a motion correctly within the Grand Rapids area, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our team. Beth Striegle is an experienced family law attorney with the knowledge to guide you through the process and help you get what you deserve: the right to visitation with your beloved grandchildren.