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Grandparent’s Rights in Illinois

Lafata Law LLC

Grandparent’s rights hold a significant place in Illinois law. 750 ILCS 5/602.9 of the Illinois Compiled Statutes defines how grandparents can seek visitation rights with their grandchildren. The law covers who may file a petition. It also covers when a petition may be filed and what the court considers when reviewing the petition. In the complex landscape of family law, particularly in cases involving divorce, parentage, or child custody disputes, understanding these provisions is crucial for both grandparents and parents alike.

Who is Covered?

Saying this law is “Grandparent’s Right” is a bit of a misnomer. Enshrined in 750 ILCS 5/602.9, grandparent’s rights extend not only to grandparents but to great-grandparents, step-parents, and siblings. The legislative intent is clear. A broad inclusion in the Illinois statute recognizes the importance of family relationships beyond the nuclear family unit.

Conditions for Filing a Petition

The Petitioner must have their proverbial “ducks in a row” before filing a petition for grandparent’s rights visitation. Before filing a petition for visitation rights several conditions must be met. There must be an unreasonable denial of visitation by a parent. This action or inaction must cause undue mental, physical, or emotional harm to the child. The law presumes parents are fit, willing, and able to make decisions in the best interest of their child. The law places the burden on the petitioner to demonstrate that visitation would be detrimental to the child’s well-being.

Factors Considered by the Court

A variety of factors are considered to determine the best course of action for the child. There must be a balance between the grandparent’s rights and the child’s best interest. The court weighs whether granting visitation would minimize the child’s exposure to conflicts between adults, emphasizing the paramount importance of the child’s welfare. The court looks to: the wishes of the child, the health of both the child and the party seeking visitation, the quality of the prior relationship between the child and the grandparent, the impact of visitation on the child’s customary activities.

Navigating the legal landscape of grandparent’s rights in Illinois requires a comprehensive understanding of the law. The law seeks to uphold the familial relationships, but you need someone to protect your right. It is paramount you contact our attorneys at 630-481-6633 to schedule a free consultation. We will discuss the details of your situation and explain how we can help protect your rights to visitation.

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Proudly serving the following Illinois Counties: DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Cook and Will. Conveniently located near the DuPage County Courthouse. If you would like to visit us at our office, we are open Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. by appointment.

Wheaton Office
2100 Manchester Rd #C-1720

Wheaton, IL 60187

Phone: 630-481-6633

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