Orlando Grandparent Rights Attorney
When it comes to visitation of a child, states tend to focus on the rights of the parents. However, grandparents also have rights. In fact, they have rights in every state, and Florida is no exception.
However, the laws can be complicated. Florida courts try not to force a biological parent to allow visitation by a grandparent, claiming that any laws enforcing this are unconstitutional. This is contrary to many situations in Florida, where the grandparents have had the children for many years. Many parents change their minds after a long period of time. They decide they want their children back and never allow the grandparents to see their children ever again—not even for visitation.
Want to better understand your rights as a grandparent? Orlando grandparent rights attorney Steve W. Marsee, P.A. Attorney at Law can help you understand the laws so you can ensure you maintain the bond you have with your grandchild.
What the Law Says
Grandparents rights are outlined in Florida Statutes Chapter 39. The law states that maternal and paternal grandparents as well as stepgrandparents are entitled to reasonable visitation with their grandchild unless the court finds that such visitation is not in the best interest of the child. However, in divorce cases, visitation is generally not allowed unless both parents agree to it.
Grandparents are also allowed to request visitation if:
- If one or both parents are deceased, missing, or in a vegetative state.
- If their grandchild is deemed dependent and removed from the parents’ physical custody.
Reasonable visitation may be unsupervised. It may also be frequent and continuing if feasible.
Grandparent visitation is allowed to take place in the grandparent’s home unless there is a valid reason for not allowing it. The grandparent will be required to pay for the cost of transportation for the child when the visitation takes place in the grandparent’s home.
A grandparent entitled to visitation is not restricted from appropriate displays of affection to the child, such as hugs and kisses. The grandparent is also allowed to give the grandchild cards, letters, and gifts.
Grandparents also have the right to adopt their grandchild. Those interested in adoption must follow all the steps. These steps include:
- Filing a petition
- Getting consent
- Scheduling a hearing
- Attending the hearing
While the process is easier for grandparents and other relatives, there can still be complications. This is especially true if the biological parents refuse to give consent. When there is consent, though, the process may be very quick, taking just a few months.
Contact Us Today
If you are a grandparent or step-grandparent in Florida, make sure you understand your legal rights. Know that you do have some rights when it comes to visitation.
Seek legal help from Orlando grandparent rights attorney Steve W. Marsee, P.A. Attorney at Law. We’ll help you get the best outcome possible. Call 407-521-7171 or fill out the online form to schedule a consultation.