What to Know About Grandparents’ Visitation Rights in Illinois

If you are a grandparent in Illinois and require assistance getting visitation rights, continue reading and reach out to our experienced Illinois family law attorney.

What are Illinois’ grandparent visitation laws?

There are no federal laws governing visitation rights for grandparents. However, in many cases, Illinois grandparents have a limited legal right to visit their grandchildren. It is generally up to the parents of the child to determine who can spend time with the child. Sometimes a non-parent can get a court order that will allow them to spend time with the child (if the child is at least one year old).

The following family members can get a court order for visitation: grandparents, brothers, sisters, great-grandparents, and step-parents.

For a grandparent to be granted visitation, they must meet the following qualifications:

  • Prove that they have been denied parenting time by a parent unreasonably.
  • Prove one of the following statements:
    • A parent of the child is incompetent
    • A parent has been incarcerated for at least three months
    • A parent of the child is deceased or has been missing for at least three months
    • The child was born outside of marriage and the parents are not living under the same roof
    • The child’s parents are divorced or legally separated
    • The child’s parents are pending dissolution or custody proceeding, and at least one parent has no objection

What do Illinois courts consider when making a decision regarding grandparents’ visitation?

If the grandparent can prove the above qualifications, the court will review the following factors to come to a conclusion:

  • The grandparents’ intentions
  • The grandchild’s preference
  • The mental and physical health of the child
  • How often the grandchild and grandparent have been in contact over the past year
  • The mental and physical well-being of the grandparent
  • The relationship between the child and the grandparents
  • If the time requested will have a negative impact on the child and their schedule
  • If parenting time being denied by the parent was in good faith
  • If the child lived with the grandparent
  • If the grandparents as the primary caretaker of the child for at least six months

If you have any further questions about gaining visitation rights as a grandparent, do not hesitate to reach out to our skilled and dedicated team of Illinois family law attorneys.

Contact Our Experienced Illinois Firm

At Butler, Giraudo & Meister, P.C., our Peoria and Tazewell County divorce lawyer will help you navigate the challenges of any divorce or family law matter you may be facing. We are dedicated to the practice of Family Law. We provide effective and compassionate legal counsel for the following legal matters: divorce, alimony, division of marital assets, child custody, and child support. Contact us today.

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