Seeking Custody Of You Grandchildren: Important Tips To Remember

Many grandparents choose to talk to a family law attorney about their rights to a grandchild and how to file for custody. In some situations, filing for custody of your grandchildren can be the most logical option to ensure the child's needs are met. However, there are also situations when custody law will not apply to your specific situation. If you are facing challenges that involve your role as a grandparent in your grandchild's life and you are considering filing for custody, there are a few things to remember.  

You Likely Won't Get Custody Due to Withholding Visitation 

Ideally, when your children have children of their own, you get the chance to visit with those children and form a familial bond. Unfortunately, family situations are not always as ideal as they could be. Therefore, grandparents do not always get the opportunity to spend time with their grandchildren. While this can be a disheartening situation, this situation is not applicable in terms of filing for custody. Parents choosing not to allow visitation is not grounds for the child to be removed from the home. However, depending on the state where you live, you may have grandparents' visitation rights that apply that could help you get visitation. 

You Must Consider Both Parents When Seeking Grandparent Custody 

If you are in a logical scenario that gaining custody may be for the best of the child, both parents have to be considered. When you visit a child custody lawyer for help, one thing they will be looking at is how fit both parents are to care for the child. The court usually feels it is best to keep children with a parent as often as possible, even if that parent has not been as present in the child's life. Therefore, if you file for custody because your daughter or son is not acting as a fit parent, going through the family court system may mean the child's other parent is evaluated as a good fit before a grandparent is granted custody. 

Your Level of Contact With the Grandchild Will Be Considered 

Have you been present in the grandchild's life? Or, has the grandchild been primarily cared for by other relatives? Grandparents are obviously first-line relatives if the child's parents are found unfit. However, the court will be considering the child's well-being overall. There can be situations in which it is more logical to place the child in the care of another family member. For example, if the child has been in the care of an older adult sibling for several years, that individual may be a more logical custodian for the child. 

Contact a local family law attorney to learn more.