Grandparents Can Unnecessarily Complicate Family Law Cases

Discuss Your Family Law Case Involving Grandparents With a Successful Family Law Attorney Chicago

Many grandparents in Chicago and throughout Illinois are fiercely devoted to their grandchildren. They make themselves available to babysit their grandchildren when they are sick or when the parents need some time to themselves. They look for ways to support their children, even during legal disputes like divorces and custody battles. At the conclusion of these types of hearings, all that most grandparents want is to be able to continue to see and develop a meaningful relationship with their grandchildren. However, grandparents can prolong and complicate family law proceedings if they are not careful.

Top Three Ways Grandparents Complicate Family Law Cases

Naturally, any time there are people involved in a legal proceeding there will be difficulties and clashes. The more people that are involved in a divorce or custody proceeding, the more one can expect there to be emotionally-charged hearings and disagreements over how the court should rule. To avoid unnecessarily complicating these proceedings further, grandparents should avoid:

  • Keeping one parent or the other from seeing the children: Grandparents should not interfere with either parent’s right to visit and parent their children unless there is an extreme and compelling emergency (such as abuse being perpetrated on the children by the parent) to support this. Even where such compelling reasons exist, grandparents would be wise to seek legal counsel and bring these circumstances to the court’s attention right away.
  • Alienating the children from one parent or the other: It is tempting and easy for grandparents to tell their grandchildren that “Mommy” or “Daddy” are to blame for the current upheaval they are experiencing. Grandparents should refrain from making such comments, however, as they tend to alienate the children from the allegedly-at-fault parent. Grandparents who are found to have attempted to alienate their grandchildren from one of the grandchildren’s parents or the other may find it difficult to obtain visitation rights or privileges in the future.
  • Taking over parental responsibilities: During a divorce or custody proceeding, money may be tight for one parent or the other. Grandparents may want or feel compelled to step up to provide babysitting, pay child support, or take over other parental responsibilities in order to help the parent fulfill his or her obligations. While there is nothing inherently bad about providing a “helping hand,” courts generally frown upon situations in which the grandparents are raising the child or spending time with the child and fulfilling the role of the parent. Make certain that when you are helping your grandchildren’s parents that you are truly assisting them with a short-term situation and not fulfilling the responsibilities they are supposed to fulfill.

Call a Chicago Family Law Attorney Today

Grandparents have limited privileges in family law proceedings, but these are privileges that can be asserted. The experienced Chicago family law attorney at Arami Law can help you do this. If you are a grandparent and are curious about your role in a divorce or custody proceeding, contact us for assistance. Call our office at (312) 584-6355 or contact us through our firm’s website to discuss your situation and options.

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