When your adult child divorces in Missouri, you may worry about how this will affect your relationship with your grandchildren. Despite the dissolution of the marriage, it is important you understand your rights as an established grandparent.
While the Missouri government amended some visitation rights for grandparents in the past several years, you may have a few other rights that could help you strengthen and maintain the bond you have with your grandkids.
You can petition for visitation
If one or both of the parents do not offer you visitation rights, you may petition the court. However, there are a few important limitations. The court may control your visitation time under a law that states your visits may not interfere with established shared custody times or become excessive. Visitation times might be established in court once your petition is accepted.
Established bonds may help
Most Missouri laws regarding grandparent visitation rights are reserved for biological grandmothers and grandfathers, so proving this bond to the court may help your case. If a question of paternity is unclear or happens to surface after the divorce, you may want to ensure you are the biological grandparent before you seek visitation rights.
Seek help from your adult child
When courts handle visitation cases, they strive to act in the best interests of the minor children involved. As such, the court may question how your home and lifestyle might affect them. Asking your adult child to speak to the court about how you have had a positive effect on the lives of your grandchildren may impact the final decision.
Your rights as a Missouri grandparent may depend upon the establishment of the relationship between your grandkids and their parents. While this may curtail some visitation rights, it may support the best interests of the minor children.