A grandparent often has a close bond with their grandchild. Many parents welcome the grandparents’ help raising and caring for their children.
However, what happens when a parent refuses to allow the grandparents to see the child? What are grandparent visitation rights in Florida? Do courts in Florida ever grant custody to grandparents?
Our Orlando grandparent rights lawyers at Conti Moore Law Divorce Lawyers, PLLC are here to help. We’ll work with you to petition the court for visitation with your grandchildren. Since 2012, our family law attorneys have been assisting clients with child custody and visitation.
How Our Orlando Family Law Attorneys Can Help You With a Grandparent Visitation Rights Case
Cases involving questions related to grandparent visitation rights are complicated. You need an experienced family law attorney to help you petition the court for visitation with your grandchildren. Grandparents may fight for custody in situations involving abuse, the threat of harm, and unfit parents.
Our Orlando child custody lawyers at Conti Moore Law Divorce Lawyers, PLLC have over 50 years of combined legal experience handling family law matters. We have a perfect 10.0 rating on Avvo and have been named to Super Lawyers Rising Stars six years in a row.
When you hire our award-winning legal team, you can expect us to:
- Explain your legal rights regarding grandparent visitation with your grandchildren
- Review your options for filing a grandparent rights petition
- Investigate the circumstances of your case
- Determine what factors could impact your visitation rights
- Determine the best approach to fight for child custody or visitation rights
- Aggressively battle for grandparent rights to protect the best interest of the child
Grandparents have limited rights in Florida. However, that does not mean that the law denies all access grandparents might have to their grandchildren.
If you are concerned about your grandchildren, contact our law office. Schedule a free consultation with one of our Orlando grandparent rights attorneys.
Florida Visitation Rights for Grandparents
Florida does not automatically grant grandparents visitation rights with their grandchildren. The Florida Supreme Court ruled in other cases that court-ordered visitation with grandparents violates the parental rights of the custodial parent. Courts have consistently found that parents have the right to make visitation decisions for their children.
Some laws allow grandparents to petition the court for reasonable visitation with a grandchild. However, the laws apply in limited circumstances.
Grandparents may petition the court for temporary custody of minor children. They may also petition for full custody of grandchildren in certain situations.
Petitioning for Grandparent Visitation With a Minor Child
Florida Statute §752.011 states that a grandparent may petition the court for visitation with a minor child when:
- Both parents are missing, deceased, or in a continuing vegetative state; or,
- One parent is in a vegetative state, deceased, or missing; and,
- The other parent has a felony conviction; or,
- Has a conviction for a violent offense that creates a substantial threat of harm to the minor child’s welfare or health.
The statute states a presumption for allowing grandparent visitation when a parent has been found criminally liable for the death of the child’s other parent. The presumption also applies if there is civil liability for an intentional tort that leads to the other parent’s death.
The presumption is overcome if the court finds granting visitation with a grandparent is not in the child’s best interest.
Grandparent Visitation With Grandchildren Who Were Taken Away From their Parents
Florida Statute §39.509 allows reasonable visitation with a grandchild when the child has been taken from the physical custody of the parent. The court denies visitation if it finds that it is not in the best interest of the child. The court also denies grandparent visitation that interferes with the goals of the case plan.
Petitioning for Temporary Custody of a Grandchild
Extended family members may petition the court for temporary custody of minor children under Florida Statute §751.03. Therefore, a grandparent may ask courts for custody of their grandchildren based on parental unfitness or when the child is in immediate threat of harm.
Grandparent Legal Rights in Florida Can Be Unclear
Courts require convincing evidence that grandparent visitation or custody is in the child’s best interest. The court is unlikely to rule against the decision of the custodial parent or biological parents unless it is in the child’s best interest. The court generally places the parent-child relationship above any legal rights of the grandparents.
Because each case is unique, it is best to talk to an experienced Orlando grandparent rights lawyer. An attorney will review the situation to determine if legal action would likely result in visitation with a grandchild. There could be other causes of action that could give the grandparent rights to visitation with a grandchild.
Schedule a Free Consultation With Our Orlando Grandparent Rights Lawyers
Are you ready to file a grandparent rights petition to see your grandchildren? Let’s discuss filing grandparent visitation requests during a free consultation. Call now to schedule a time to meet with one of our Orlando family law attorneys.