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Grandparent Custody & Visitation

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Grandparent Custody & Visitation

Visitation is when a person who is not the parent of a child spends time with that child. Visitation used to include time spent by a parent with a child, but that is now called parenting time.

In general, it is up to the parents of a child to decide who can spend time with that child. But sometimes a non-parent can get a court order to force the parents to let them spend time with a child, if the child is at least one year old.

Only the following people can get a court order for visitation with a child:

  • Grandparent
  • Great-grandparent
  • Brother or sister
  • Step-parent

If the grandparent or great-grandparent is on the father’s side, they must first show that parentage has been established between the father and the child. If the father was married to the mother when the child was born, parentage has been established.

Non-parents can also be awarded custody of children when a child is not in the possession of a natural parent.

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