A divorce can affect relationships beyond the one that is severed through the legal process. Connections between parents and kids can become strained, but so too can the more distant relationships between kids and their extended family members. For example, when parents go through a divorce and the kids are placed in the custody of just one of the parents, the grandparents on the other side of the family may find that their time with their beloved grandchildren is extremely limited.

This situation has led courts throughout the country to recognize and allow grandparent visitation in certain circumstances. Ohio courts recognize grandparent visitation and, when appropriate, allows grandparents to secure time with their grandchildren. Individuals who wish to pursue this option should consult with their family law attorneys to learn more about their specific cases.

Grandparent visitation, though, is generally allowed when a court finds that it will support the best interests of a child. The child and grandparent usually must have a strong relationship prior to the court approving the petition for visitation from the grandparent, and often the concerns and preferences of the child’s parents will be considered in determining if visitation with the grandparent is appropriate.

Grandparent visitation cases are not exclusive to situations of divorce, and they may also be relevant when a parent dies and the parents of the deceased lose touch with their child’s widow and their grandchildren.

Children can benefit from maintaining their relationships with their extended family members and, when appropriate, the courts of Ohio will allow these bonds to be protected through judicially approved visitation time.