Grandparents have unique and special relationships with their grandchildren. One of the casualties of a couple's divorce is often the estrangement of grandparents and relatives from the couple's child or children.
In Arizona however, grandparents are entitled to visitation and sometimes even custody. Arizona Revised Statute, § 25-409 provides that a judge may allow a grandparent reasonable visitation with a child if the judge believes that such contact would be in the child's best interests, and any one of the following applies: (1) the child's parents have been divorced for at least three months; (2) a parent of the child has been deceased or has been missing for at least three months; or (3) the child was born out of wedlock.
Under certain circumstances, grandparents may find it necessary to seek custody of grandchildren. Arizona law provides that where grandparents have and “stood in the shoes” of the parent, they may be entitled to obtain custody.
As a grandparent, the most important thing you can do is to maintain a constant relationship with your grandchild. If your child, or his or her spouse, has obstructed face-to-face access to your grandchild, do not give up. Continue contact by alternative means of communication, such as telephone, e-mail, text-messaging and letters. Continue to send your grandchild holiday cards and presents. Keep track of your efforts to maintain contact with your grandchild. Keep a diary or log of phone calls made, cards sent, or time spent with your grandchild.
Contact McKay Law for a free consultation if you believe that you are being denied access to your grandchild.