Grandparents can retain visitation rights to their grandchildren in Florida, but it can be difficult if one or both of the grandchildren’s parents want to limit or eliminate contact with the grandparents.
One of the most common scenarios in which questions about grandparent visitation arise is the divorce of the grandchildren’s parents. With custody and visitation split between parents, grandparents may fear that they will lack opportunities to form meaningful connections with their grandchildren.
How Grandparent Visitation Rights Have Changed in Florida
Unfortunately, the laws around grandparent visitation changed within the past several years, making it more difficult for grandparents to seek visitation.
Before July 1, 2015, grandparents could petition for visitation rights when a child’s parents were divorced, a child was born outside of a marriage, or either parent had deserted the child. It still wasn’t easy to obtain grandparent visitation rights, but the barriers were less stringent than they are currently.
Now, grandparents in Florida may only seek visitation under the following conditions:
- Both of a grandchild’s parents are dead, missing, or in a persistent vegetative state; OR
- One parent is deceased, mission, or in a vegetative state; AND
- The child’s other parent is a convicted felon of a violent offense and poses a significant threat of harm to the child’s health or welfare
In other words: Grandparents can only seek visitation rights when both parents are deceased, or a sole surviving parent is a convicted violent felon who poses a threat to their child.
Do You Need Legal Assistance?
If you require legal assistance for any family law matter, Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. can help. Our attorneys are skilled legal problem-solvers who can help our clients find creative solutions to their legal challenges.
For more information, contact Tinny, Meyer & Piccarreto, P.A. today.