As a grandparent, you have a unique role in your grandchild’s life. You often get to be a source of fun and never-ending love. It can be great to be a grandparent. Sometimes, though, you may have a falling out with your child or the children’s other parent. This could prompt them to keep your grandchildren away from you. This can be quite devastating to you and the children. That is why the state of Georgia does offer some ability for you to seek visitation rights.
The Georgia General Assembly explains that your rights for grandparent visitation do have limits. The main limitation is that if your grandchild’s parents are still together and living together with the child, you do not have the right to seek visitation. The court generally sides with parents as it believes they know how best to parent the child and what is in that child’s best interest.
However, in other situations, you do have a right to request visitation. This includes situations where there is a custody dispute, a divorce situation or termination of parental rights. You also may request visitation if there is a stepparent adoption or an adoption of the child by another blood relative.
It is important to note, though, that if custody is in court currently, you cannot file for visitation that year. You also only have the right to file for visitation every two years.
The court will only grant you rights if it feels it is in the child’s best interests and that there will be a negative effect on the health and welfare of the child if he or she does not have you in his or her life. Also, note that the parent or guardian of the child may request termination of your rights at any time. This information does not constitute legal advice. It is for education only.