Some divorces could become contentious when an individual requests a court order that prevents his or her former in-laws from visiting their grandchildren. Family court judges, however, generally promote grandparents’ visitation rights by including them in a divorce decree. 

If you notice a sudden lack of phone calls or missed visits, you may begin to suspect that your son or daughter’s ex-spouse has negatively influenced your grandkids. He or she may have encouraged the children to limit their visits with you after gaining custody during the divorce. 

Are there laws that protect grandparents’ rights? 

Alaska’s family laws allow parents to determine whom their children can spend time with and visit. As a grandparent, however, you can exercise your visitation rights by petitioning a court to permit you to have reasonable contact with your grandchildren. 

Under Alaska Statutes Title 25, section 25.20.065, you may request a court order for visitation if you have an established ongoing relationship with your grandchild. The visits, however, must prove beneficial to your grandchildren. 

What might the court consider as beneficial? 

A family court judge generally needs to know how spending time with your grandchildren will benefit them. As reported by Country Living Magazine, children who develop a healthy relationship with their grandparents experience and develop more positive relationships with older individuals. Multi-generational communication skills can help children grow into healthy adults who reject ageism in both society and in the workplace. 

The court may also need to know how much harm a child has sustained from his or her parent preventing regular visits with you. A judge may order a revised visitation schedule if your petition successfully demonstrates how an ongoing relationship helps your grandchildren.