Brunswick Family Law Attorney: New Law Expands Grandparent Visitation Rules
Brunswick, GA (Law Firm Newswire) April 11, 2012 – The Georgia Legislature has passed a bill that dramatically changes child visitation law in the Peach State with regards to grandparents.
The new law will strengthen the rights of grandparents in divorce cases where a parent has died or been incapacitated or incarcerated. But opponents of the legislation say it is an erosion of parents’ rights.
Rep. John Meadows, a Republican representing Calhoun, Ga., introduced the bill that will give judges the power to allow visitation between grandparents and children. This law will be used most heavily in cases where grandparents have financially supported a child for at least a year or spend regular time visiting them.
“This new law will be a significant change for many Georgia families,” said Brunswick family law attorney Nathan Williams of Williams Litigation Group. “This will shake up the system. There will be a lot of cases come up quickly as grandparents look to play a role in the grandchildren’s lives.”
If one of the parents dies or is incarcerated or incapacitated, then the court would have to find that grandparent visitation was in the best interest of the child in order to grant visitation, according to the proposed law. This could happen even over the objection of the other parent.
“Traditionally, the ‘best interest of the child’ standard has been needed when a judge had to make a ruling in a case where the court found one of the caregivers to have abused or neglected the child,” Williams said. “Now, if a parent feels like visitation from a grandparent is not in the best interest of the child, then the grandparents could still fight in court for the right to see the grandchildren and the judge would be the decision-maker, not the other parent.”
Nathan Williams is a Brunswick personal injury lawyer, Brunswick divorce attorney, criminal defense and Brunswick DUI lawyer in Southeast Georgia. Visit http://www.thewilliamslitigationgroup.com or call 1.912.264.0848.
The Williams Litigation Group
5 St. Andrews Court
Brunswick, GA 31520
Toll Free: 877.307.4537
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