Grandparents’ Rights in Pennsylvania

November 2, 2017

Delaware County Child Custody Lawyers discuss the rights of grandparents after a divorce. Divorce can be very complicated, particularly when there are children involved. One of the most challenging aspects of a divorce settlement is deciding on a custody arrangement, as it can be difficult to come to a consensus. The rights and responsibilities of the parents may only be part of the equation. Other family members, such as grandparents, may wish to see children after a divorce and may not realize that they have rights.

A custodial arrangement can take many forms. Parents may choose to share custody of their children, dividing the children’s time between them. In some cases, a parent may request sole custody, which may or may not include visitation rights for the other parent. Ultimately, whatever arrangement is made must be in the best interests of the children. If the parents cannot reach a solution, the courts may intervene and hand down a decision that they think will best serve the children.

Grandparents Can Stay in Grandchildren’s Lives After Divorce

Children build many important relationships in the formative years, including those with their grandparents. Grandparents often play a key role in raising children, particularly if one or both parents are not able to provide care. In the case of a divorce, grandparents have the right to petition the courts for visitation and, under certain circumstances, partial custody of their grandchildren.

Petitions from grandparents will be considered in situations where:

  • One or both birth parents has died
  • The parents have finalized their divorce, or have been separated for a period of at least six months and divorce papers have been filed
  • Children have been living with a grandparent for at least a year before being removed by a parent

The court will consider the petition and determine whether it is in the child’s interests to grant visitation or custody. There are many factors that the court will consider, including the child’s relationship with his or her grandparents and whether living with them will further his or her emotional, physical, and mental well-being. There are also practical considerations, such as school districts and extracurricular activities, as well as how the proposed arrangement could impact the child’s intellectual and social development. If the child is old enough, his or her own preferences may be taken into account as well.

Divorce can be very disruptive for all parties involved, but it is possible for grandparents to stay in their grandchildren’s lives and provide some level of care for them. It is important for grandparents to understand their rights in a divorce and present their case in a way that demonstrates their commitment to their grandchildren’s well-being. Working with an experienced child custody lawyer can help ensure that your rights are protected and the best possible outcome is achieved.

Delaware County Child Custody Lawyers at Eckell Sparks Advocate on Behalf of Grandparents

The child custody lawyers at Eckell, Sparks, Levy, Auerbach, Monte, Sloane, Matthews and Auslander, P.C. have the knowledge and experience to handle all types of cases, including grandparent custodial petitions. We understand that every family is different, and we are dedicated to finding the best resolution for your family. With offices conveniently located in Media and West Chester, we help grandparents throughout the Philadelphia area. Call us today at 610-565-3701 or contact us online to arrange a confidential consultation with an experienced Delaware County child custody lawyer.