Is Grandparents Visitation Rights a Part of a State Law?

So many people can't wait for the day to become grandparents. It's said to be the time to enjoy the company of children the most. This is because as a grandparent, you don't shoulder all the responsibilities as you did with your own children.

But that's becoming seemingly scarce when we realize some unfortunate facts. One such fact is that approximately 50% of American children will witness the breakup of a parents' marriage. Besides divorce, a family might experience the death of the primary caretaker of the child, or a child might be removed from a home because of substance abuse from one or both parents; which, in all cases, would put a grandparent back in the role of parent. Here are a couple of points to consider and know about if you find yourself in this situation by bringing up your grandchild.

Custody or visitation

Grandparent visitation rights are recognized in all states. This is in order to ensure that a child has access to the emotional support of a grandparent in their life. You can gain custody rights when the child's parents are unable to properly care for their child or if they're deceased or imprisoned. As the grandparent, you might think you have automatic visitation rights, but unfortunately, that's not how it works and many grandparents are denied visitation. The term grandparents rights is one that many people are not familiar with. This is why in most cases, you would need an attorney to guarantee your rights and set up the best arrangement for visitation or even custody as it might differ from state to state.

A court should take into consideration the overall circumstances of the child, but to get the outcome you want, legal representation is your best option. When your rights are not guaranteed, you will not be able to see your grandchildren, nor help in their upbringing at the time they need it most.

Find financial support

Your circumstances will determine if you're entitled to various government funding programs. You could find assistance from programs, such as:

  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families: A child might be eligible for this low-income assistance program.
  • Medicaid: You can apply for this type of insurance on behalf of a grandchild.
  • Social Security: For children with deceased parents and children with disabilities, a parent's social security benefit may provide financial support. The Social Security Administration states on its website, “Generally, the biological parents of the child must be deceased or disabled or the grandchild must be legally adopted by the grandparent.”

Legal representation will help you learn more about the various helpful aid programs that you will need. Since your retirement plan might not be enough to feed, clothe, shelter and educate your grandchild.

The bond between grandparents and grandchildren is special. Grandparents might be heavily involved in child rearing in many families and while they do have rights, they're not as many as you might think. Being retired, you would need help and legal support to visit your grandchildren for both their benefit and yours. Don't waiver your way in having legal visitation rights and even custody to bring up your grandchildren in your loving care.

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