In Florida, it is extremely difficult for a grandparent to earn custody rights to care for a grandchild or gain visitation rights without showing the parents are unfit. Florida law stipulates that a grandparent can petition for visitation rights if parents are “missing, deceased or in a vegetative state” or if one is deceased, missing or in a vegetative state and the other has been “convicted of a felony or an offense of violence evincing behavior that poses a substantial threat of harm to the minor child’s health or welfare.”
If the child is considered to have a fit parent or has no significant harm, then it is very difficult for a grandparent to be able to successfully claim rights.
The well-being of the grandchildren is a concern of most grandparents, and divorce or separation of parents can be very difficult on grandparents as well, especially if they are not allowed in a child’s life. It is within the parents’ rights to deny the grandparents or other relatives visits with the children.
All hope is not lost, however, and Jacksonville family law attorney Beth M. Terry, P.A. can help. She has assisted grandparents and other family members in their efforts to gain visitation and custody rights.
There may also be other paths for grandparents or other relatives to obtain temporary custody of the child or children, if the parents are found unfit to care for them.
If you have any concerns regarding the well-being of a child in your family, or if you have been denied visitation, contact the family law office of Beth M. Terry, P.A., today.
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