When a Missouri couple ends a marriage and there are children involved, it is not simple to determine the visitation plans. Often, this is limited to parenting time, but there are others, such as grandparents who believe they should have the right to see the child. This can be the foundation for a dispute. Understanding the law regarding grandparent visitation is key when there are issues preventing it.

Reasonable visitation can be given to grandparents in four circumstances. First, if the parents have decided to dissolve the marriage, the grandparents can intervene in the action only because of visitation issues. They can also file a motion to have a dissolution decree modified, so they can have visitation after it has been denied. Second, if a parent of the child has died and the surviving parent issues a denial to the parent of the deceased person — the child’s grandparent — to see the child, visitation can be granted.

Third, the child must have lived in the home of the grandparent for a minimum of six months in the previous 24 months immediately after the petition to dissolve the marriage was filed. Fourth, a grandparent who has been unreasonably denied the right to see the child for more than 90 days can warrant the court allowing visitation for grandparents. If the parents remain married and reside together with the child, then the grandparent cannot file for visitation.

When there is a divorce or a disagreement as to whether the grandparents can see their grandchild, it can be a difficult situation to navigate. These problems stem from the parents divorcing. When grandparents want to have the right to see their grandchild or parents have a justifiable reason not to want that to happen, it is important to have legal assistance. A lawyer who is experienced in family matters, including divorce, child custody, visitation and more can be of assistance in a case.