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Wheaton grandparent rights attorneyWhile many families cherish the relationship between grandparents and their grandchildren, there are exceptions. Whether a parent has personal issues with the grandparents or truly has reason to believe that the grandparents are a danger to their children, there are certain conditions in which contact between children and their grandparents may have been terminated. There are also situations in which grandparents may feel that children are better off with them than with the actual parents. However, there are specific necessities laid out by Illinois law that dictate whether grandparents can legally pursue visitation or custody rights.

According to the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers, Illinois Chapter, the state of Illinois is very “pro-parent” and “anti-grandparent.” The rules for grandparents seeking visitation rights are fairly strict. The first prerequisite is that the parent or parents’ refusal of grandparent visits must be without good reason.

How to Know if You Have a Case

Aside from showing that parents have unfairly cut off your contact with your grandchildren, your case will need to meet one of the following conditions: 

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Illinois grandparent rights attorneysParents are not the only influential people in a child’s life; grandparents can have a lasting and loving impact as well. Sadly, there are situations in which a grandparent may be denied time or visitation with their grandchild. What rights might you have while facing such a situation, and how can you exercise them? The following information explains, and it outlines how an experienced family law attorney can help.

Grandparent’s Rights Under Illinois Law

While Illinois law does recognize the importance of a child’s extended family – especially during divorce and other family law proceedings - not every grandparent has legal rights to exercise. Thankfully, there are certain extenuating circumstances that may open an opportunity to pursue legal rights to a grandchild. These situations include:

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Posted on in Child Support

grandparent child custodyToday’s concept of family has shifted from something that may have once been described as solely mom, dad, and kids, to a more inclusive interpretation that could include grandparents, aunts and uncles, half siblings, and step parents, just to name a few. The dynamic of the typical American family is certainly changing, so much so that perhaps there is no longer anything "typical" about it. A recently published news article reports that one trend in particular is emerging regarding the change in family structure - grandparents fulfilling the role of parents in taking care of their grandchildren.

Grandparents as Parents

According to a new U.S. Census report, there is an increase in the number of grandparents who are caring for children. The report concludes that about 10 percent of the nations’ grandparents live with at least one of their grandchildren. Over the course of the last approximately 40 years, the number of children living in grandparent-run homes has doubled. In 2012, 60 percent of households that contained both grandparents and grandchildren were maintained by a grandparent. In one-third of them, no parent was present.

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grandparent child custodyToday, family units are made up of all types of individuals. For many children, their grandparents step in to take on a larger role in their upbringing. According to a recently published article, the state of Illinois is taking steps to recognize these positive contributions grandparents are making in the lives of today’s youth. The state observed Grandparents’ Day recently and praised grandparents who were raising their grandchildren.

Grandparents Day

The Illinois Department on Aging (IDoA) had a large part in celebrating Grandparents’ Day on September 7th. The IDoA spoke out positively about grandparents who stepped into the role of parent to their grandchildren and took the opportunity to remind these caregivers about support services that were available to them. A grandparent who resides with their minor grandchildren and is responsible for the majority of their basic care is considered the child’s primary caregiver.

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grandparent rights, Illinois custody laws, Illinois visitation laws, grandparent visitation, Illinois child custody law, Illinois family lawyer, Illinois family lawIn child custody matters, the child’s parents are not the only members of the family whose relationship with the child will be affected. Often times, there are extended family members on both sides who may be interested in securing time and solidifying their relationship with the child. However, under the law, only certain family members are able to petition the court to do so. Additionally, those who are eligible to petition the court will likely only get their requests granted under certain situations.

Illinois Law for Grandparent Visitation

In Illinois, grandparents have the right to seek visitation of a minor grandchild, provided that certain circumstances exist. Not only is the burden of proof for the petitioner to fulfill greater in a grandparent visitation case than in a parent visitation case, but there are also specific factors that the grandparent petitioner must meet in order for the court to award visitation with the minor grandchild.

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