Ohio recognizes in the inherent right of parents to make decisions regarding their children’s upbringing. This means, unfortunately, when there is a falling-out between parents and children that grandchildren do not have a relationship with their grandparents. Ohio courts typically will not get involved in a parental decision to keep children from having a relationship with their grandparents. But, in some circumstances it is possible for grandparents to petition a court for visitation rights.
Grandparent rights are statutorily defined. If grandparents are prohibited from seeing their grandchildren the courts can become involved in the grandparents’ visitation if a court has jurisdiction over the grandchildren. More plainly, if the grandchild is not involved with the courts a court cannot bring the grandchildren into the jurisdiction of the court based on the grandparents’ desires. But, if the child is already involved with the courts and under its jurisdiction, the court can entertain the grandparents’ request for visitation.
Without a pending or resolved “divorce, dissolution of marriage, legal separation, annulment, or child support proceeding” involving the grandchildren the court simply lacks the authority to entertain a grandparents’ rights petition.
The Nicodemus Law Office has worked with both parents and grandparents on these matters. Whether you are a grandparent yearning to see your grandchild or a parent seeking to prohibit grandparent time, contact the Nicodemus Law Office at 740-422-9280 to schedule a consultation.