Popular television personality Bethenny Frankel is waging a full-blown (and very public) divorce and contentious custody battle with her soon-to-be-ex-husband – and her newest attack on Mr. Hoppy is not regarding him, but his parents: she wants to limit the grandparents’ time with her three-year-old daughter, Bryn. So does this mean that Bryn, who reportedly has a very strong bond with her grandparents, will be unable to see them in the future without Bethenny’s consent?
In California, grandparents have no absolute right to visitation with their grandchildren. In some cases, however, grandparents may have the right to visit their grandchildren even over the objection of the children’s parents – but the courts will begin with the assumption that the rights of the parents supersede those of grandparents. This is because parents have a fundamental right to the care, custody, and control of their children. However, there are a number of situations where the courts may grant grandparents visitation rights:
- One parent has died and the remaining parent refuses to let the grandparents visit.
- The parents are divorced.
- The child does not live with either parent.
- Visitation is deemed by the court to be in the best interest of the child. Visitation is deemed by the court to be in the best interest of the child.
Furthermore, grandparents generally cannot file for visitation rights while the grandchild’s parents are married. However, there are a number of exceptions, including:
- The parents are living separately;
- A parent’s whereabouts are unknown (and have been for at least a month);
- One of the parents joins the grandparent’s petition for visitation;
- The child does not live with either of his or her parents; or
- The grandchild has been adopted by a stepparent.
Grandparent visitation issues are complex. At Lonich Patton Erlich Policastri, we are committed to working with grandparents to help them maintain access to their grandchildren. Our attorneys typically handle two types of grandparents’ rights cases: those involving the custody of grandchildren and those involving grandparents seeking visitation rights. If you have any questions about grandparents’ rights, please contact our California Certified Family Law Specialists (as certified by the State Bar of California Board of Legal Specialization). Our attorneys have decades of experience handling complex Family Law proceedings and are happy to offer you a free consultation.
Please remember that each individual situation is unique and results discussed in this post are not a guarantee of future results. While this post may include legal issues, it is not legal advice. Use of this site does not create an attorney-client relationship.