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Grandparent Child-Visitation Rights Under New Jersey Law

Today’s modern parent might just be the modern grandparent.

Nearly 75 percent of parents with adult children are helping financially, to the tune of more than $500 billion a year, according to Forbes. Put another way, today’s parents are spending twice as much on adult children as they are saving for retirement.

Often that money is spent freely and willingly to afford children and grandchildren a better life. For many aging adults, grandchildren are among the greatest joys, and so that help extends to child care or significant help with child rearing.

In fact, in at least 3 million cases in the United States, grandparents are raising grandchildren, according to the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP).

An experienced family law firm in Somerset or elsewhere in New Jersey will be best able to help secure grandparent rights under New Jersey law. Because of how the court determines grandchild visitation, failure to formally secure your rights can have a detrimental effect on your legal standing, regardless of your current relationship with a grandchild’s parents.

New Jersey Family Law: Grandparents and Visitation

N.J.S.A. 9:2-7.1 governs grandparent visitation rights under New Jersey law. The statute also covers sibling visitation rights. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled on the issue of grandparent visitation rights in the 2000 case of Troxel v. Granville 530 U.S. 57. Since that time, state legislatures have adopted a series of measures to codify the visitation and custody rights of grandparents, including recent legal measures in Pennsylvania, Indiana and Texas.

Factors New Jersey family law court may consider in determining grandparent visitation include:

  • Grandparent’s relationship with child.
  • Grandparent’s relationship with child’s parents.
  • Amount of contact.
  • Affects on parental custody rights.
  • Abuse and child welfare history.
  • Good faith of applicant.
  • Best interest of the child.

Legal Help for New Jersey Grandparents

Our Somerset family law attorneys know establishing your visitation rights at the outset can best secure long-term relationships with your grandchildren. As we see by the factors a court considers in determining visitation rights, your current relationship with a child is of significant importance. In cases where relationships with a child’s parents are less than ideal, maintaining your relationship with a child may require court intervention and failing to act may undermine your position with the court.

The factors the court considers in determining grandparent visitation rights also make clear that allowing emotions to overflow when dealing with a grandchild’s parent can be detrimental to your case in court.

Even if you maintain a good relationship with a child’s parents, things change. People move away, and/or develop new relationships. Formalizing your visitation rights should be looked at as just another step in the divorce or child-custody process. An experienced Somerset family law firm can help you secure your long-term relationship with your grandchildren, while keeping everyone’s emotions in better balance.

Call Rozin|Golinder Law, LLC today for a free and confidential consultation.

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