Washington divorces affect the entire family and grandparents often become estranged from their grandchildren. This is especially true in situations where one parent has sole custody. At Hansen Law, PLLC, we often help protect grandparent visitation rights and help ensure an existing relationship with the children continues.
According to Verywell Family, grandparents do not automatically have legal rights. If you have a bond with your grandchildren, you may consider going to court for visitation rights. Before filing the paperwork, you should understand what that entails. A primary consideration is cost. There are no statutes in Washington regarding grandparent visitation. The law presumes that reasonable parents make decisions in the best interest of their children. As a result, the burden is on you.
Court costs, attorney fees and mediation are among the most common expenses. Depending on the circumstances, you may have a bill in the thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. If you lose, you may also have to pay the legal fees of the other party.
Going to court also costs your privacy. No longer is family baggage tucked away. Attorneys, judges and social workers may all access the details of the case, sifting through the sordid details of hidden family issues. In some cases, you and other members of the family may undergo a psychological evaluation before the process continues.
Litigation places your grandchildren in the center of the conflict. They may feel responsible for the family tension, particularly if the legal proceedings introduce doubts regarding the custodial parents’ judgment. The court makes grandparent visitation decisions based on what they believe are the best interests of the children. An attorney experienced in family law can help you navigate the complex issues surrounding your family conflict and help achieve the best possible outcome. Visit our webpage for more information on this topic.