Legal Question in Family Law in Massachusetts

I live I Ma. My husband and I had falling out with my parents. We have offered them time with our two young boys but they want more time. They demanded to see my kids twice a week for four hours or more each time and at least twice a month sleepovers. My husband and I didn't agree with this. My parents are now threatening to take us to court for grandparents rights. My husband and I are great parents. We own our home, both work full time (I work from home so I am still with the kids), the kids are fed great, dressed great, and taken eat are of! Can my parents get grandparents rights?

*My parents have ben a part of the kids lives since the beginning

Asked on 5/12/13, 6:22 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Your parents are grandparents and you are allowing them to see their grandchildren just not as much as they like. Absent a showing of you unfitness to raise your children.

A current leading case: Blixt v. Blixt, 437 Mass. 649 (2002). A parent's decision regarding grandparent visitation must be given "presumptive validity." To obtain visitation, "the grandparents must allege and prove that the failure to grant visitation will cause the child significant harm by adversely affecting the child's health, safety, or welfare."

In your case you are not failing to grant visitation only the amount of time they visit. If your parents are bad mouthing you or your husband; or refusing to follow your reasonable rules in their interactions with the children you may have grounds to stop visitation altogether.

A good attorney would recommend to your parents that they try to cooperate and re-build the relationship so they can spend more time with their grandchildren and you.

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Answered on 5/13/13, 8:54 am

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