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Can Illinois Grandparents Receive Visitation With Grandchildren?

Posted on in Family Law

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For many children, spending time with grandparents is just as vital to their happiness and success as spending time with their parents. Across the country, millions of grandparents are an integral part of their grandchildren’s lives. Many older parents worry that if their child gets divorced, they will no longer be able to spend time with their grandkids. In some cases, a grandparent may need to petition the court in order to be granted visitation with their grandchildren. If you are seeking this type of order, it is essential that you obtain professional legal counsel so you fully understand your rights as a grandparent.

Circumstances That May Lead an Illinois Court to Order Grandparent Visitation

Unless parents have lost their parental rights due to abuse, abandonment, serious drug addiction, or another reason, they have a legal right to spend time with their children. This right does not automatically extend to grandparents. However, grandmothers and grandfathers may be able to receive a court order that grants them the legal right to visitation with their grandkids in certain situations. If you are a grandparent, you may be able to receive court-ordered visitation with your grandchildren if:

  • The parents are not married or living together.

  • The parents are divorced, and one or both parents agree to grandparent visitation.

  • A parent is detained in a correctional institution for more than three months.

  • A parent has not seen or communicated with his or her child in more than three months.

  • One of the parents is deceased.

  • One or both parents are found to be unfit by the court.

What if My Grandchildren’s Parent Does Not Agree to Visitation?

Family dynamics can be tense and complicated – especially when divorce is involved. Most of the time, grandparents end up petitioning the court for grandparent visitation because the child’s parent has denied visitation to the grandparents. If you want to gain court-ordered visitation with your grandchildren, you will need to show the court that the parent’s decision to deny you visitation is causing unnecessary harm to the children’s well-being.

Illinois courts consider many factors when determining whether or not to grant grandparent visitation. The court will want to know the reason that the parent has not allowed the children to see you. A judge will also seek to understand the relationship that currently exists between you and your grandchildren, whether or not the children have ever lived with you for a significant amount of time, your physical and mental health, and if possible, the grandchildren’s preferences regarding visitation with you.

Contact a Burr Ridge Divorce Attorney

Little compares to the guidance, wisdom, and fun that grandparents can offer grandchildren. In some cases, grandparents may be granted court-ordered visitation with their grandchildren, even if this goes against a parent's wishes. If you want to learn more about your rights as a grandparent, contact the distinguished law firm of Botti Marinaccio, LTD. Schedule a confidential consultation with an experienced Cook County parenting time lawyer by calling us today at 630-575-8585.



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Botti Marinaccio, LTD.


2015 Spring Road, Oak Brook, IL 60523

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