Estimating And Understanding Your Rights As A Grandparent In Alaska

28 October 2016
 Categories: Law, Blog

As a grandparent in Alaska, you may be able to access court-ordered visits with your grandchildren under the age of 18 only in very select circumstances. For instance, you can ask the courts to intercede on your behalf if the parents of the child in question are filing for a divorce or legal separation. In addition, if the child is being placed for adoption or if the parents of the child have passed away, you may be able to get visitation with your grandchildren. The details of your case and the specific issues you need to address in court can impact not only the results you can expect, but the total estimate of time and expenses that you will accrue. Therefore, when you need to protect your access to and time with one or more of your grandchildren under the age of 18 in the state of Alaska, it is crucial to be aware of the information listed below.

You Will Need To Have Previously Had Or Attempted To Have A Relationship With The Children

One of the requirements that the courts in Alaska expect from you is that you should have or be able to prove that you have tried to establish a relationship with your grandchildren. Therefore, you should establish through photos, witnesses to your relationship with the children, and financial records, if applicable, that you have an existing relationship. You will also need to show that not having visitation with you will be detrimental in some way to the children.

If you have previously tried to establish a relationship and been denied access to the minor children, you should obtain evidence of those attempts. For example, if neighbors saw you being turned away at the home where the children live, you may be able to get them to testify to your efforts. If it was necessary to fly or take a train to their home, you should save those records as they could be important in court.

Adoption Will Frequently Sever Your Rights To Visitation

The state of Alaska places a big emphasis on the views and opinions of the parents when determining what will be best for minor children. That means that most of the time, if a child is voluntarily placed for adoption by the biological parents, you will lose your rights to see him or her.

The exception to that guideline is if it is put into writing in the adoption decree. As a result, it is a good idea to have your attorney ask for visitation as part of the adoption that is being arranged. Failing to do so in a timely manner can result in a complete termination of your rights as a grandparent.

In conclusion, preserving your rights to visitation with your grandchildren in Alaska can be challenging and time-sensitive. Therefore, it is a good idea to consider the facts listed above when your access to those children has recently been limited or eliminated and speak with an attorney. By doing so, it is often easier to determine an approximate estimate of the amount of time and money your case will require.