Grandparents can play an essential role in the raising of a child. Sometimes the child’s parent may not agree on how much access a grandparent can have to a child.
Grandparents can petition the court to get visitation. In certain situations, courts will grant custody to a grandparent.
How to get visitation
In Connecticut, a grandparent will need to demonstrate a parent-like relationship with the child and that the child will suffer harm if visitation does not occur. The law favors the parent-child relationship, so grandparents must show that their visitation will not interfere. In addition, a parent can object to the visitation and prevail if the grandparent cannot show that they had a parenting role. The court considers multiple factors to determine if a parent-like relationship exists with the child, including length of time of relationship, specific activities performed by the grandparent and if the grandparent undermines the parent’s authority.
Situations leading to grandparent custody
In Connecticut, the courts recognize a child’s best custody option is with their parent. If a grandparent can show that residing with a parent places a child in emotional or physical danger, they can file a petition with the court for custody of the child. Examples of a threat to a child include a parent’s failure to protect them from abuse in the house, failure of the child to attend school or inability to take care of a child’s basic needs. The court must have evidence that taking the child out of their parent’s home is in the child’s best interest.
Grandparents should know they have some rights to a relationship with their grandchild in Connecticut.