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Newnan Office
37 Calumet Parkway, ​Building N
​Suite N-118
Newnan, Georgia 30263

470-344-8550 Phone
770-847-7326 FAX

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Newnan Grandparents’ Rights Attorney

Georgia family lawyer helps clients looking to spend time with their grandchildren

Children benefit enormously from the love of a grandparent, but disputes sometimes prevent Georgia residents from seeing their grandchildren. This can have a harmful effect on young people as well as on their grandparents. If you have been prevented from spending time with your grandchildren, the Law Office of S. Mark Mitchell, LLC can advise as to whether you might be able to obtain a court order granting you visitation rights. If the right circumstances exist, I will initiate legal action on your behalf. My Newnan firm also handles matters when grandparents believe that they should have custody of grandchildren whose parents no longer can handle their responsibilities safely. 

When grandparents can obtain visitation time

Under Georgia law, parents who live together have the right to determine who spends time with their children. However, if the household is not intact due to divorce, separation, death or another type of absence, grandparents can petition the court for visitation. As in other matters relating to custody and visitation, judges focus on the best interests of the child when considering whether grandparents should be given the right to have scheduled visits with their grandchildren.

In recognition that there is great variation in grandparent-grandchild relationships, the applicable Georgia statute lists the following conditions that favor an order granting visitation:

  • The child or children lived in the same residence as their grandparent for at least six months.
  • The grandparent(s) requesting visitation provided financial support for the grandchild(ren) for at least one year.
  • The grandparent(s) regularly provided care for their grandchild(ren).

Even if your situation does not fall into one of these categories, you still might be able to present clear and convincing evidence that granting visitation is in the child’s best interests and that refusing your request would result in imminent harm. As a seasoned Georgia family law attorney, I know how to develop the strongest possible case on your behalf. 

Filing for visitation 

As a grandparent, you can file an Original Action for Visitation if no current case exists regarding custody of your grandchild. You also can seek grandparent visitation by joining an existing divorce proceeding or another court action where custody of your grandchild is at issue. When the judge reviews whether visitation rights should be granted, they might appoint a guardian ad litem to represent the interests of the child in court. Should grandparent visitation be ordered, it must be for at least 24 hours per month. 

Firm assists grandparents looking to obtain custody of their grandchildren

When children face a serious risk of harm in their home, grandparents might seek full custody in order to give them a better living environment. In some instances, parents consent to relinquishing custody due to a medical or substance-abuse problem. However, there are contested cases in which grandparents pursue custody over the objections of a child’s parent(s). This might occur due to an allegation of abandonment or lack of parental fitness. While Georgia law has a rebuttable presumption that the best place for a young person is with their parents, this can be overcome if a persuasive case can be made that shifting custody to grandparents is in the child’s best interests. My firm can assess the specific circumstances might warrant such an award.

Speak with a knowledgeable Georgia lawyer about a grandparents’ rights issue

The Law Office of S. Mark Mitchell, LLC in Newnan provides comprehensive legal support to Georgia clients on matters relating to grandparent visitation and custody rights. Please call 470-344-8550 or contact me online to set up a consultation about your particular situation.