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The Divorce Attorney Journal

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    Divorce Attorney Journal

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    November 6, 2019
    4 yearsago

    grandparent custody michigan family law attorneyTelevision dramas like HBO’s Big Little Lies make it seem like a grandparent could easily petition for custody of his or her grandchildren. Real life doesn’t always get quite so grandiose, however. In Michigan, grandparents are only awarded custody of a grandchild if it is determined by the court that the parents are unfit to care for the child. There are shades of gray, however.

    Granting Grandparent Visitation

    If a grandparent fights for custody of a grandchild and is not awarded this role, an order for visitation, also known as grandparenting time, can be entered. Or a grandparent can petition the court for visitation, with or without a custody battle, under the Michigan Grandparent Visitation Bill.

    At least one of the circumstances must apply:

    • The grandparent has been the child’s caregiver within the past year.
    • The child was born out of wedlock and the parents do not live together.
    • Parents of the child have filed for divorce.
    • Someone other than the parents has legal custody.
    • The child does not live with the parents.

    When a grandparent feels they have been wrongfully denied visitation with the grandchild and fits into one of the above categories, they can work with a Michigan lawyer to petition the court for visitation.

    Keep in mind, though, that grandparents don’t always have the right to visitation with their grandchildren. The courts typically assume there is a reason a grandparent has been kept away from their grandchild and that the reason is in the child’s best interests. A grandparent must prove otherwise and show evidence that the child could suffer mentally, physically, or emotionally by not having time with them.

    Levels of Grandparent Time

    Should grandparent visitation be granted, the type of visitation that is awarded will vary depending on matters such as:

    • The child’s preferences
    • Emotional ties and affection between the child and grandparent
    • The role of the grandparent in the child’s life
    • The quality and length of relationship between grandparent and child
    • The mental and physical health of the grandparent
    • Hostile relationship between parent and grandparent
    • Any history of abuse
    • Moral fitness of the grandparent
    • Willingness of the grandparent to foster a good child-parent relationship

    Navigating Child Custody

    Courts generally favor parents and assume that a child being with his or her parents is in the best interests of the child unless proven otherwise. If a grandparent feels strongly that their grandchild is in dire circumstances because of their living situation with their parents, they can pursue third-party custodial rights, even if the parent objects.

    If you want to protect your child from his or her grandparent, or you are a grandparent who wants the support of the court to get custody or visitation with your grandchild, contact the family law attorneys at Michigan Divorce Help in Macomb, Michigan, to discuss your case.

    Be sure to schedule your free initial consultation quickly to avoid the possibility of “conflicting out,” especially if you feel the other party in your situation will see as many attorneys as possible to discuss their case and prevent you from retaining that lawyer’s help.


    What makes us the right divorce attorneys for you?

    Family Law Expertise

    Most lawyers are in a general practice and do some of everything. One of our main focuses is on Family law and being expert at divorce, custody and support matters.

    Strong Relationships

    We are in court daily, working with the family court judges, their staff and clerks, the Friend of the Court office, the Bar Association and other attorneys working in this area. We pride ourselves on fighting hard for our clients while working well with everyone.


    Our extensive experience and strong relationship with the courts and our peers leads many judges and attorneys to hire us to act as Mediators in other Family Law cases. Make no mistake; having a strong working relationship with the court can have a massive impact on your case. Unlike most attorneys, we have no fear of the court room and are in trial regularly against the best in the business. We see the judges every week and maintain strong ties with their staff.

    We Care

    Although every attorney can “handle” your case, Michigan Divorce Help cares about you and your family. We work extremely hard to keep this difficult process civil and to shelter your children from as much of the negative facets as possible.


    Once your case is concluded, we will be there to help you with any post-judgment problems that may arise.


    Everyone’s financial situation is different and we work with our clients to formulate a fee arrangement that works within your means.


    We have handled every possible situation involving domestic law. We will do everything possible to wrap up your case in a timely manner, avoiding delays that cause unnecessary legal fees.


    When your case cannot be easily solved, we will fight hard and use all of our resources to win. Unlike most attorneys, we have no fear of the court room and we regularly win cases against the best in the business at trial.

    Expert Staff

    Unlike many attorneys who have a part-time typist and work 30 hours a week, we have an expert staff available all day long to assist you and provide immediate service.

    Personal Service

    At Michigan Divorce Help, your case will be handled by an experienced family law attorney. Each of our attorneys in our family law division has many years of experience in handling family law matters.

    We encourage you to see these differences for yourself and call today to speak with one of our partners or schedule a free consultation at our office.

    During traditional business hours, please call us at: (586) 954-9500

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