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What are your rights as grandparents?

Sometimes grandparents seek to take over the care of children because the kids’ parents are not able to care for them properly due to drug or alcohol abuse, medical or emotional problems, incarceration or any number of issues. By taking custody of their grandchildren, grandparents can keep these kids out of the foster system or other government programs and provide them with a stable, loving home.

If you are caring for your grandchildren because their parents aren’t able to, it’s important to ensure that legal guardianship is established. This can help prevent other family members from trying to take the kids from you or parents who aren’t fit to care for them from taking them.

We advise grandparents and others who seek to take legal guardianship of children on how to go about doing so. We also help grandparents and other guardians get the financial assistance they need from absentee parents as well as government-run programs that provide financial aid. We assist grandparents in getting the legal rights they need to make decisions for their grandchildren involving health care, education and more.

Another issue that grandparents often face is obtaining visitation rights after the child’s parents are no longer together or one of them has passed away. This can be tricky if the grandparents don’t have a good relationship with the parent(s) who are prohibiting grandparent visitation. While the law generally is on the side of the parents, if grandparents can show that contact with their grandchildren is in those children’s best interests, it may be possible to secure visitation rights.

At Akiona Law, PLLC, we understand the strong bonds that grandparents can form with grandchildren and the importance of good grandparents in the lives of kids. This is true whether they are caregivers if parents are unable to fulfill those responsibilities or they simply want to be part of the family support system.