In some cases, yes. Thanks to New Jersey's Grandparent Visitation Statute, grandparents have a right to petition for reasonable visitation with their grandchildren. Although grandparents can request a visitation order at any time, visitation rights are most commonly sought after one parent's death; before, during, or after the parents' separation or divorce; or following a serious disagreement between the parents and grandparents.
Are you worried about a parent trying to limit your time with your grandchild? While you may be within your legal rights to file a petition seeking visitation, actually obtaining a grandparent visitation order over a parent's objections is much more difficult than it may sound. The court is often reluctant to interfere with a fit parent's authority to make decisions for their child.
In New Jersey, all decisions related to child custody and parenting time must be made with the child's best interests in mind. To secure court-ordered visitation rights as a grandparent, you must show that failing to grant your petition for visitation would harmful to the child. When making decisions regarding grandparent visitation, the court considers the following factors:
- The relationship between the child and the grandparent applying for visitation.
- The relationship between each of the child's parents or residential guardians and the applying grandparent.
- How much time has passed since the child and grandparent were in contact.
- How the visitation would affect the relationship between the child and their parents.
- Parenting time arrangements if the parents are separated or divorced.
- The good faith of the applying grandparent.
- Any previous physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, or neglect, by the grandparent applying for visitation.
- Additional factors that may be relevant to the child's best interests.
A Family Law Attorney Can Help With Your Grandparent Visitation Rights
Are you struggling with a grandparent's visitation case in New Jersey? Whether you're a grandparent seeking a visitation order or a parent opposing a grandparent's request for visitation, at Carl Taylor Law, our knowledgeable divorce and family law attorneys can help you protect your rights and resolve the matter in the best interests of the child. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for an initial consultation.