How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask FamilyAnswer Your Own Question
FamilyAnswer
FamilyAnswer, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 25365
Experience:  10 + years of handling Family Law, Divorce, Child Custody and Child Support cases
9540344
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
FamilyAnswer is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My name is ***** *****. I have petitioned of my niece and

Customer Question

Customer: My name is ***** *****. I have petitioned for visitation of my niece and nephew. They are in the custody of their paternal grandmother. Father is deceased. Grandmother was given custody. I have always been allowed unrestricted visitation with notice to the Paternal Grandmother. I now have a sisterly relationship with the mother of the children, as she is no longer on drugs, and the paternal grandmother refuses visitation.
JA: Thanks. Can you give me any more details about your issue?
Customer: I worked with the grandmother to obtain custody with the hope of my sister getting clean, and resume a relationship with the children. The paternal grandmother despises my twin sister. I have never went against the paternal grandmother's wishes i.e. - no contact with the kids and my sister.
JA: OK got it. Last thing — JustAnswer charges a fee (generally around $18) to post your type of question to Family Law Experts (you only pay if satisfied). There are a couple customers ahead of you. Are you willing to wait a bit?
Customer: Sure. If you don't get to me in time, then I have gone to bed, and will resume tomorrow.
JA: OK. Now I'm going to take you to a page to place a secure deposit with JustAnswer. Don't worry, this chat is saved. After that, we will finish helping you.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Good morning. Just to be clear, the visitation agreement with the grandmother was previously informal but not that she has refused it, you filed a petition to get it ordered?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
You are correct.
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Thank you. You will need to show that it is in the best interest of the children, that you have visitation with them. Absent a court order, the grandmother would have no legal obligation to allow you to see the children. I know there were no issues in the past but if she changed her mind and has custody of them, she does have the final say. Now, as the moving party, you will want to show that it is in their best interest and that you have been seeing them and visiting with them, over the years and for that to be taken away, would hurt them and ruin the relationship that you have with them. Moreover, if the mother is no clean and sober and off drugs, she may want to consider trying to get the children back. If she does that, then it would be at her discretion to allow you to see them.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Their mother filed as a party to my petition in suppor of mine, as well as petitioning for visitation herself. Can you suggest discovery questions, that reveal the best interest? There is an established relationship, and attachment. How do I prove that? Specifics, please.
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

The questions would be used to attack the grandmother and flush out her reasoning for not allowing the visitation and to try and show there is no basis for it. Now, your testimony is evidence for the Judge to consider, so you want to show exactly what you have done over the years with the children, show the bond and share with the Judge what you will continue to do with them.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What aspect of the grandmother do I attack? Specifics. Would it be appropriate to show pictures, provide a timeline, etc as my testimony? Am I able to present exhibits? What do you suggest?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'm also sending interrogatories to the GAL, asking, what she did or did not do, what conclusions she has made, and to what extent she based her position on her conclusions. Because the GALs recommendation can be an indirect way of influencing the Court with heresay. What do you think of this?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I should add, Granmother continues to allow visitation with MY grandmother and MY Aunt and Uncle because they agree to her literal ultimatum, no contact with the mother or you can't see the kids. Should I, and how do I address this? Would it benefit my case?
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

The grandmother will get to speak and share why you should not have visitation. As such, you want to attack the grandmother if she makes claims which are not supported. She will need to have a reason for this and if she says something that is not true, you want to attack it. You can show photos and a timeline and present any evidence you have to support your position and claim. As far as the GAL, these are questions which you may be able to ask in court but I am not inclined to believe they would have to answer the interrogatories.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
This has caused additional alienation within my family, as MY grandmother and aunt and uncle won't speak with me because of the ultimatum. I have 2 children myself who are now estranged from my side of the family and no contact with their cousins.
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Yes, those are all things to present to the Judge and show. You also should explain that you have tried to work with the grandmother but her requests are so unreasonable, they cant be complied with

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I was planning on calling the GAL as an "expert witness". What do you think of this? Also, I do not want supervised, only unsupervised and I am not supportive of her dictating my relationships. The facts about my sister are apparent. That's why she has custody. I should mention, I've had emergency custody previously. I had no contact with my sister and put my time into my niece and nephew, as it was a turbulent 4 years. Now, my sister is truly clean, and I have slowly welcomed her back into my life, home and children's lives. She does not live with me. She visits. We are twins, and the grandmother and GAL continually believe because we are twins have formed an unsupported bias in regards ***** ***** making.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I also want to add that my parents are deceased, so, no maternal grandparents, their father is dead, and they are not allowed to see mom, yet.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I got the idea of asking GAL questions from
The Civil Practice Act. Also, I've got old planners with dates and times of phone calls, contacts, court dates, time off, etc. should I use that as relationship evidence?
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

Yes. Use everything you have to show the relationship over the years. If you think the GAL will help your case then try and elicite testimony from then also. They represent the children so they may favor your visitation with them

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can I provide the items themselves at court? Or is it expected to presented in a format that can be seen by all parties at once? How do I introduce this evidence in the courtroom?
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

You need to turn them over and provide copies prior to the hearing so the other party is on notice. You can not just surprise them with them the day of

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
How far in advance do I need to provide them?
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

At least 10-14 days prior you should send it, so they have reasonable time to review everything

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Can you provide me with a question for discovery to support alienation of mother and myself?
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

You can establish this yourself, through your own testimony, advising the Judge she refuses to allow you to see the child. After all, that is the basis for you asking for visitation, since she does not allow you to see the children.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Understood
Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

please remember to rate my help at this time at the top of this page, prior to leaving, so I can receive the proper credit, for our time together. Thank you.

Expert:  FamilyAnswer replied 1 year ago.

I just wanted to follow up and see if you had any other questions or needed me to clarify something. I am here to help, so please let me know. Thanks!