Grandparent Rights Attorneys in Indianapolis
Counsel from Dedicated Family Lawyers Serving Carmel & Indianapolis
In Indiana, a trial court may grant visitation rights to grandparents if
certain conditions are met.
Specifically, there must be a situation where:
- A child's parent is deceased;
A child's parents are
- A child was born outside of the parents' marriage.
If any of these three conditions has been met, the court may grant the
child's grandparents visitation, so long as it is in the best interests
of the child. It also must be shown that child's parent is not acting
as a fit parent in denying a grandparent visitation with the child.
Some key factors the court will consider include whether a grandparent
has had or has attempted to have meaningful contact with the child during
the child's lifetime. In addition, the court can consider the parents'
reasoning in denying or limiting visitation, and what visitation the child's
parent is already providing to the grandparents voluntarily. The court
may interview the child in the court's chambers to assist with determining
the child's perception of on visitation with their grandparents. The
court may additionally take testimony from family members, therapists,
and other persons who may have a close relationship with the child.
What to Expect in Court Proceedings
A proceeding for grandparent's visitation is commenced by filing a
petition in the appropriate court in the county where the child resides
or the county where the child's parents were divorced. After the petition
has been filed, grandparents can enter into settlement negations with
the child's parents if all parties agree to discuss the matter. If
negotiations are unsuccessful, the case will proceed to a hearing. At
the hearing, each party will be permitted to present evidence supporting
their respective positions and the judge will make a decision regarding
the best interests of the child. If an order for visitation is granted,
that order may still be modified at a later date.
It is important to keep in mind that there is no specific legal standard
in Indiana for determining how much visitation is "too much."
The amount of visitation either agreed to by the parties or ordered by
the court will depend upon various factors. For instance, the court may
evaluate how much time the grandparents have spent with the child in the
past and what the child’s needs are. In short, the trial court is
vested with a broad amount of discretion in evaluating grandparent visitation cases.
If you are fighting for visitation time with your grandchild, we encourage
you to contact our Carmel &
Indianapolis family law attorneys today. Likewise, if you are a parent of a child faced with an action for
grandparent visitation that you do not believe is in your child’s
best interests, be sure to call on Hollingsworth & Zivitz. We can
assist you in protecting your rights as a parent or grandparent. With
respect to either position, we understand the strong emotion that goes
into protecting your grandchild or your child and are ready to assist
in advocating for your case.
Contact the firm today set up an initial appointment. We proudly serve clients throughout
all of Central Indiana.