When young couples in Texas and across the country decide to have children, they often look to their own parents for guidance on how to raise their newborns. Grandparents often have years of experience and wisdom to pass down to a new generation in their family. The bond between grandparent and grandchild is one of utmost importance. This bond is one that will teach the child valuable lessons he or she can use throughout life. Unfortunately, some parents want their children’s grandparents at more of a distance. What rights should grandparents have to be a part of their grandchildren’s lives? Should grandparents have visitation rights? That is the question the U.S. Supreme Court might consider this winter.
The Supreme Court may revisit a decision it made 11 years ago that made competent parents the ultimate decision makers when it comes to how a child is raised. This decision could be crucial in the growing debate of whether grandparents’ rights to be a part of a child’s life against the will of the parent are valid.
The battle will likely be complex, as grandparents typically ask for visitation rights due to varying circumstances. Sometimes they ask to be involved in their grandchildren’s lives because of a death of one parent, a remarriage of one parent or the grandparents think the child’s parents are incompetent. Because the bond between children and their grandparents is one of the most important relationships in a child’s development, grandparents should understand what rights they might have under their own circumstances.
Source: The Huffington Post, “States’ Grandparent Visitation Laws Raise Concern,” Stephanie Reitz, Dec. 5, 2011