Do grandparents have Visitation rights to their Grandchildren?
Yes, in certain circumstances. All 50 states have enacted legislation enabling grandparents to petition the courts for visitation rights with their grandchildren. Visitation rights are not automatic – they merely give grandparents the right to seek a visitation order. Many states permit only grandparents to petition for visitation, but some have extended the right to other relatives, such as great-grandparents, aunts, uncles and siblings, stepparents, and even non-relatives with whom the child has a close relationship. Most commonly, a grandparent (or other permitted third party) may petition for visitation after the death of a parent or upon divorce of the parents. Some statutes allow petitions when a parent is incarcerated, when a child is born out of wedlock, and when the child has previously lived with the grandparent. Arizona law allows grandparents to seek visitation with their grandchildren if certain conditions exist. Grandparent visitation matters can be extremely complex and fact specific. If you have questions about such issues, you should consult an attorney to discuss your situation.