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Are Grandparents Entitled To Parenting Time In Divorce Cases?


Somewhere, there is a woman who gives thanks every day of the year that, now that she is divorced, her ex-mother-in-law can no longer ruin Christmas with her endless parade of drama like she did during the marriage.  Somewhere else, there is a woman who would rather communicate with her ex-mother-in-law than with her ex-husband, and whenever she drops off her children at their father’s house, she hopes that their grandmother is the one who will answer the door.  The courts recognize that every co-parenting situation is unique, and there are as many different kinds of grandparent-grandchild relationship dynamics as there are families.  Grandparents may be a factor in the decisions you and your ex-spouse make about your parenting plan, but in divorce cases, the family court does not follow a standard set of rules about children spending time with their grandparents.  A Boca Raton child custody lawyer can help you work out the details of your parenting plan so that your children get to spend adequate time with your parents.

Grandparents Can See the Children During Their Side of the Family’s Parenting Time

Parenting plans are customizable; you get to decide where the children are each day of the year.  It includes provisions about major holidays and school vacations, when most people see their grandparents.  If it is important to you for your children to visit your parents, you should schedule your parenting time on days when it is easy for you to visit your parents or them to visit you; the closer you live to your parents, the easier this is.  The parenting plan also includes provisions about transporting the children.  If the grandparents’ house is centrally located between the parents’ houses, you might drop your children off at their grandparents’ house each week before your ex-spouse picks them up.

The more troubled a parent’s relationship is with the children, the more formal the grandparent’s role becomes.  If the court grants a parent supervised parenting time only, it might require a grandparent to be present during the parenting time.  Grandparents do not have their own parenting time in a divorce case.  Parenting time for grandparents only applies when a parent dies or is incarcerated or, in some cases, when the children are placed in foster care.

It is your responsibility to coordinate with your parents for them to see your children during your parenting time, and your ex-spouse has that same responsibility with his or her parents.  If, on the other hand, you have a reason to believe that it is unsafe for your children to be around your ex-spouse’s parents, you can bring this up in court.  The court might decide that, when your children are with your ex-in-laws, your ex-spouse must also be present.

Contact Schwartz | White About Extended Family Drama After Divorce

A South Florida family law attorney can help you formalize a parenting plan that encourages a strong relationship between your children and their extended family members.  Contact Schwartz | White in Boca Raton, Florida about your case.



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