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Grandparent Visitation

Family Court Judges in New York: Can They Order Grandparent Visitation?

Grandparent and child When it comes to discussing issues of child visitation, most family law cases center around the right and obligations that parents encounter that are unmarried, married people not living together, or after a divorce takes place. The New York courts are obliged to act in the best interests of the children in any family law case, this means that they will often implement visitation orders that they believe will be beneficial to the child or children in question. However, it's worth noting that the visitation considerations in a family court case may not be limited exclusively to parental obligations. New York courts also contemplate situations in which visitation might be ordered for a child's grandparents. This can also be the case wherein the custodial parents would prefer to limit those visitation rights.

As a child custody attorney for residents of Long Island and New York, Mr. Shapiro supports not only parents fighting for visitation rights, or battling against visitation orders, but also grandparents seeking opportunities to interact with their grandchildren following a divorce or at times parents that oppose grandparent visitation. From his office in Nassau County, Mr. Shapiro acts as more than just a divorce lawyer. He also provides insights into the nature of section 72 of New York Domestic Relations law, which outlines the fact that visitation and custody rights may sometimes be ordered for the grandparents of certain children. Sub-section 1 of section 72 deals with the elements involved with understanding visitation rights - and this is something that Mr. Shapiro can discuss at length with his clients.

Understanding Section 72 of New York Domestic Relations Law

Sub-section 1 of section 72 in New York Domestic Relations Law discusses the procedure that must be considered in a situation where one or both of a child's parents have passed away. However, this section also addresses the factors that the courts of New York may need to address when determining whether they should award visitation to grandparents - even in circumstances where one or both of the parents are still alive. When the court indicates that "equity would see fit to intervene" this scenario highlights circumstances in which the parents of a child are still alive, and at least one parent is against the concept of providing visitation rights to grandparents. In scenarios such as this, the court will need to determine that visitation for the grandparent would be in the best interests of the child.

As a child custody attorney, Mr. Shapiro has dealt with numerous cases in which visitations rights for parents and even grandparents have been brought into question. As such, he has the experience to guide his clients through the meaning of "statutory interpretation" and what factors courts must consider when determining if grandparents should receive visitation rights. The courts are free to determine when they believe "equity would see fit to intervene" in the rights that a parent or parents have to maintain the larger degree of influence over the people who their child have relationships with. The courts of New York are also free to determine when they feel that visitation for grandparents would be in the best interests of the child.

Managing the Complexity of Grandparent Visitation

Visitation is a complex consideration in any family law case. It requires both the courts and the clients involved to think carefully about how specific relationships with certain families might contribute to or detract from a child's quality of life. Many psychologists believe that strong relationships with family members are important for any child, however the case for each client can differ drastically. When decisions regarding grandparent visitation rights in New York have been published, there have been several instances that can provide guidance into the nature of these decisions.

Often, Mr. Shapiro uses previous case literature to educate and inform his clients about the nature of their case. For instance, in one case outlined here, the court allowed for the paternal grandparents to visit in a situation where the child was adopted by a non-biological father. It was determined that the child would not be able to have a relationship with his biological father however, as this wasn't in the best interests of the child. The court explained that the ability to maintain relationships with biological grandparents could lead to a discussion of the child's relationship with his adoptive father. The court held that this would not be harmful to the child's psychological development. The court also said that awarding visitation rights to the grandparents was unlikely to interfere with the child's relationship with their adoptive father.

If you're seeking help with acquiring visitation rights for your grandchildren, or you're involved in a dispute about visitation with grandparents, reach out to the Law and Mediation Office of Darren M. Shapiro. Mr. Shapiro has a great deal of experience dealing with unique and complex issues in the family law space. He understands the importance of achieving the right outcome in a visitation situation. Contact Mr. Shapiro on (516) 333-6555 to schedule your initial consultation.

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