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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 Visitation

DuPage County family law attorneys, grandparents rightsThe relationship between grandparents and grandchildren can be mutually beneficial and rewarding. However, sometimes family relationships can be complicated and grandparents can be left out in the cold and are unable to visit their grandchildren. Conversely, there may also be times where a parent does not want their child to be around a grandparent who is seeking visitation.

What Rights Do Parents Have?

Parents have extensive rights when it comes to decisions made for or on behalf of their kids. It is up to each parent to decide the parameters of the relationship between his or her parents and the child, and generally the courts do not want to interfere with that relationship.

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visitation rights for grandparents, DuPage County child custody lawyerAs a grandparent, you know that the relationship you have with your grandchildren is one of the most rewarding and special bonds that you can have. However, if your child has gone through a messy divorce or custody battle, it can impact your ability to spend as much time with your grandchildren. Many states uphold a strong set of rights for grandparents and other close relatives, including siblings. But under Illinois law, many rights afforded automatically to parents are harder for grandparents to assert.

How to Seek the Right to Visitation

Unlike visitation for parents, visitation for grandparents is not guaranteed. However, as a grandparent, you do have the right to ask a family law judge to grant you visitation time with your grandchildren. Under Illinois statute, you can file a petition if certain circumstances exist that have been preventing you from seeing your grandchildren. The statute requires you to establish that one of the parents has caused an "unreasonable denial of visitation," and that one of these conditions applies:

  • The child's other parent is deceased, missing, incarcerated, or has been deemed incompetent;

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