When is the right time to exercise grandparents' rights? | The Law Offices of Dorie A. Rogers, APC
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When is the right time to exercise grandparents' rights?

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Family law covers many issues, including marital dissolution, child custody, adoption and grandparents' rights. In Orange County, California, readers are quite familiar with child custody issues that often arise in divorce cases. Local residents need to understand that parental, as well as grandparental, custody issues are decided in divorce cases.

Grandparents' rights are often associated with cases involving unfit parents or those who are dealing with substance abuse or have been incarcerated due to criminal charges. When custodial parents can no longer take care of their children, grandparents often step up and raise the children. Without the assistance of grandparents, children may end up in foster homes or be adopted.

In order for grandparents to obtain custody of grandchildren, they must prove their fitness and right to parent over a child's mother or father in court. If parents have mental issues or a history of domestic violence, grandparents can have compelling cases for custody.

Grandparents' rights can also be exercised in cases where parents work overseas, such as during military deployment, and no one is available to care for the children except for grandparents. Parents may transfer custody of their children to grandparents or grandparents can obtain legal guardianship of their grandchildren.

Parents and grandparents understand that the utmost priority in any child custody case is the best interests of the children. People who are dealing with child custody issues in family law court may resolve the case through alternative methods, such as collaborative law or mediation. Litigation is still a viable option if both parties simply cannot come to terms.

Source: American News Report, "Child custody not limited to divorce," April 2, 2014

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