Rochester Grandparents’ Rights Lawyer

Rochester Grandparents’ Rights Lawyer

Do New York Grandparents Have Custody And Visitation Rights in Rochester, New York?

Grandparents have a special role in the life of their grandchildren, and it is often in the best interests of the children to have regular access to their extended family members. However, due to family conflict, divorce or even a death in the family, grandparents may find it necessary to fight to preserve their relationship with their grandchildren.

New York law allows grandparents to seek custody and visitation with grandkids in certain circumstances. At Trotto Law Firm, P.C., we understand the sensitive nature of unusual custody and visitation concerns. Our lawyer will evaluate your case, explain your options and advocate for your rights as you move forward.

rochester grandparents rights attorney

Time is a critical concern in any family court case, and if you believe you have grounds to petition for grandparent visitation in Rochester, NY, it is essential to work quickly to secure legal counsel you can trust. Call us to discuss your custody and visitation goals at 585-453-0040.

Pursuing Custody of Grandchildren

New York courts recognize the parents’ inherent right to make decisions on behalf of their children, even if that means limiting contact with grandparents. For example, if a parent determines that one of their child’s grandparents is an unsafe influence for any reason, they have every right to limit or cease contact with that grandparent. So, technically, the custodial parent always has the final say when it comes to who they allow to spend time with their child. However, there are limited circumstances in which a court may agree that visitation with grandparents is in the best interests of the child, including:

  • Evidence of a strong pre-existing relationship between the grandparents and grandchildren and the relationship was cut off. If your grandchild’s parent has cut you off from contact due to a personal issue between you and them, this is unfair to the child and grounds for you to petition the court for grandparent visitation.
  • One parent is unavailable. A grandparent may petition the family court for visitation if one of their grandchild’s parents is unavailable for any reason for an extended period of time. Examples may include incarceration, severe illness, or military service overseas.

You may have reasonable grounds to petition the court for the right to seek custody of your grandchild if the parent/parents are unfit. These instances include extraordinary circumstances such as if there is evidence of abuse, poverty, neglect or drug use by the parents. Clear evidence of extraordinary circumstances would make this not only necessary but also beneficial for the children.

Parents who deny their children visitation with grandparents must have solid reasons for doing so under New York state law. This is especially true if the grandparent already has a strong bond with the child. Unfortunately, some parents will use their children as leverage when they have disagreements with their child’s grandparents. New York’s grandparents’ rights laws aim to prevent this from happening as much as possible.

When a grandparent visitation order is approved by the family court, this will function similarly to a custody and visitation order for parents. The order will dictate when the grandparent may have access to the grandchild, for how long, and specific rules pertaining to communication and transportation for visitation times. Once you have secured your grandparent visitation order, it is crucial to carefully review it with an attorney’s assistance, so you fully understand your rights and responsibilities under the terms of the order.

rochester grandparents rights lawyer

You Have A Right To Pursue Visitation With Grandchildren

For a grandparent, being able to see grandchildren and have regular visits with them is critical for maintaining relationships. If your goal is to protect your relationships with your grandchildren, then our goal is to bring your case to a successful conclusion. You can rely on our experience and knowledge of New York laws as you navigate this sensitive family law matter and try to establish visitation rights.

If you must file a petition for grandparent visitation with the Rochester family court, the team at the Trotto Law Firm, PC, will help you make a more compelling petition. We can assist you in gathering records and documentation or any other evidence that helps you prove that you had a healthy relationship with your grandchild that was unfairly cut off by their parent. Alternatively, if your grandchild has lost a parent or if one parent is unavailable for any extended period of time, we can help you explain the situation to show the court why visitation with you would suit their best interests.

Ultimately, most grandparent visitation disputes come down to the judge’s decision. Like most other family court cases involving children, the judge has a firm duty to always rule in favor of the best interests of the children involved in the case. Your Rochester grandparents’ rights attorney must strive to make a compelling case on your behalf. This is likely to involve disproving false claims from a parent who has unfairly denied you access to your grandchild or proving other extenuating circumstances that have led to your current situation.

The Trotto Law Firm, PC, excels at complex family court disputes. We have helped many past clients navigate their cases with greater confidence because we take the time to get to know each client’s unique needs. Our goal is to help you approach your case with peace of mind and reach the results you hope to see as quickly as possible.

FAQs About Rochester, NY Family Law

Can a Parent Deny a Grandparent Visitation in New York?

Technically, yes, it is legal for a parent to deny a grandparent visitation in New York. The state upholds that the parent has the inherent legal right to make major decisions on behalf of their child. However, grandparents in New York have the legal right to file a petition for visitation if they can prove that visitation is in the best interests of their grandchild. The court will then determine whether the relationship with the grandparent suits the best interests of the child and award or deny visitation rights accordingly.

How Do I File for Grandparents’ Rights in New York?

If you are a grandparent seeking visitation rights, you must file a petition for visitation in the family court of the county in which your grandchild lives. It’s best to have an experienced Rochester grandparents’ rights attorney assist you with this, as you will need to make a compelling case proving that visitation would suit your child’s best interests.

Do Grandparents Have Custody Rights in New York State?

A grandparent does not have custody rights per se, but they do have the right to visitation as long as their relationship with their grandchild suits the child’s best interests. If a parent cuts off contact between the child and a grandparent without a good reason, the grandparent can petition the family court for visitation, and the court will likely grant this petition if the parent does not produce solid evidence showing that the grandparent-grandchild relationship is unsuitable or unhealthy for the child in any way.

What Does a Rochester Grandparents’ Rights Attorney Cost to Hire?

It’s understandable to have concerns about the potential cost of legal counsel when you need to hire a Rochester grandparents’ rights attorney for any reason. Most family law attorneys in New York charge their clients per hour, so the longer they spend working on a case, the more it costs the client. You must fully understand the billing policy your attorney has before agreeing to their representation, so there aren’t any unwelcome surprises when it comes to the final cost of their legal counsel.

Is It a Good Idea to Hire a Rochester Grandparents’ Rights Attorney?

It is technically possible to petition the Rochester family court for grandparent visitation without an attorney. However, it is always best to consult trustworthy legal counsel before entering any type of family court dispute involving children. These cases can be delicate, and every case is unique, so an attorney who is able to take the time necessary to provide specific advice for your situation is an invaluable asset if you want to reach the best possible outcome as soon as possible.

The Help You Deserve is A Phone Call Away

Learn more about your options and rights by scheduling a case evaluation with our Rochester grandparents rights attorney. Call our Rochester office at 585-453-0040 or complete the online contact form for more information about grandparents’ rights.

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