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Non-legal Grandparent trying to sue for visitation?

Follow along - my brother, Carl eloped with Ruby when he was 18. Carl and Ruby had a child, Tracey. Carl and Ruby divorced. Neither could take care of Tracey - so my parents adopted him - so Tracey (who was born my nephew became my brother)- got it? - Ruby is Tracey's biological mother, but she was unfit - literally - she had another child, by another man - Both of the children were discovered locked in a room (she had been locking them up while she went out - they were 6 months and 2 years old)
My brother, Tracey is now 24 and has married and had a child of his own - and Ruby has popped up threatening to sue them for "grandparent's rights to visitation" -

Now - I believe that since she is NOT Tracey's legal mother - she signed away her rights when her kids were taken from her and adopted by other people - she should also not have any LEGAL rights to sue for visitation of my niece - right?

Answer Question

Asked by ItsNotSoBad at 2:37 PM on Jul. 3, 2010 in Money & Work

Level 5 (69 Credits)
Answers (8)
  • Right. I would think that if she signed off her rights to her child that includes rights to their children.

    Answer by bumblebeestingu at 2:39 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • Family law is not the same in all states. You need to consult with an attorney.

    Answer by rkoloms at 2:41 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • sounds like your right. she shouldn't have legal visitation. I would think Grandparents don't have any legal rights to family members as long as their parents are alive.
    Like, if I didn't want to see my mother anymore she couldn't come and sue for a right to see her grandchildren. At least that's how I would hope that would work! lol Especially in that situation with you! (PS...I love my mother and that was only an example lol :) )

    Answer by CAGirl4 at 2:41 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • Sounds right. Tracey was adopted out and Ruby lost all privileges. Check the laws in your state, of course, but I'm pretty sure grandparent rights are mostly imaginary.

    Answer by Pnukey at 2:45 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • Actually, CAGirl4, as I understand it - that's why there IS the legal ability for the grandparents to sue for visitation. The question comes from her having given him up for adoption - so she isn't my brother's legal parent ( and therefore not the legal grandparent of his child either). - and the premise goes - if she isn't the legal parent, then she's not the legal grandparent - and therefore has no legal right to demand visitation.

    I'm sure we'll end up consulting an atty - but this seems cut and dry to me. Just hope the courts in his state feel that way (he lives in Mississippi - I live in Texas)

    Comment by ItsNotSoBad (original poster) at 2:50 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • She has the right to petition the courts for visitation..

    HOWEVER, due to the circumstances she probably doesn't have rights to actually be granted visitation. If by some miracle she is, it's most likely to be with supervised visitational rights.

    While grandparents in some states have the right to seek visitation rights, in most cases they are typically denied because they aren't the legal parents or guardians, without their child (the father or mother) actually consenting to it, it's the most likely conclusion that they will be denied.

    Answer by xxhazeldovexx at 3:13 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • Your brother can also put up a petition to the courts to have a restraining order placed against her for his children. This will help move things along more smoothly and show the courts that she really isn't wanted in the lives of his children and he feels she is a risk factor in their lives.

    Answer by xxhazeldovexx at 3:16 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

  • How does this idiot even get a lawyer to back her up? Really...with her history...especially if child services may have ever been involved. My biological father tried doing this but the judge laughed as soon as he seen that we were in custody of the foster care system til we were 18. I had a restraining order on him ever since.

    Answer by mom23boys679 at 3:29 PM on Jul. 3, 2010

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