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Visitation and Custody Rights of Grandparents

Visitation and Custody Rights of Grandparents

In Indiana, a child’s grandparent may request visitation rights following the divorce of the child’s parents or if a parent is deceased. Visitation cannot be granted to a grandparent if (1) the petition is filed by a paternal grandparent; (2) the child was born out of wedlock; and (3) paternity has not been established. To be entitled to visitation, a grandparent must file a petition with the court, which the court may then grant if it determines that visitation rights are in the best interests of the child. The court may consider various factors in making that determination, including whether the grandparent has made or has attempted to make meaningful contact with the child. The court will also presume that the child’s parents are fit and give special weight to the parents’ wishes in giving a grandparent visitation rights.

In some situations, grandparents may become the primary caregivers of their grandchildren. In the event that a child is not safe in the home and must be removed, the child may be placed in protective emergency custody with a suitable and willing relative.

Contact the Family Law attorneys at McNeelyLaw LLP if you have questions about grandparent visitation or custody.

This McNeelyLaw LLP publication should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinion of any specific facts or circumstances. The contents are intended for general informational purposes only, and you are urged to consult your own lawyer on any specific legal questions you may have concerning your situation.

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