This blog has on previous occasions talked about how Arizona has a law that, in some circumstances, allows grandparents to obtain a court order requiring that they get to visit their grandchildren from time to time.
While these grandparents' visitation rights are not quite the same as those of a parent, they still can be a great means for preserving a relationship between grandparents in the Phoenix area and their grandchildren.
Arizona's law allows for grandparent visitation under certain circumstances. For example, when one of the child's parents has died, the grandparents of the parent who died may need a court order for visitation. Likewise, grandparents can request visitation in cases where their grandchild's parents never married or even when the parents have been divorced for more than three months.
Even in these circumstances, though, a court is going to give a lot of weight to the opinion of the child's parent or parents regarding visitation. However, while they certainly have a say, the parents' word is not final. By way of example, the court will also examine whether the child has had a consistent relationship with his grandparents. If the parents object, the court will attempt to discern what exactly the parent's concerns are and why the parent has them. If the parents disagree regarding allowing grandparent visitation, the judge then has to make the decision based on the best interests of the children.
Ultimately, the judge is going to make a decision that it in her mind is in the best interest of the child before her. In order to make that decision, though, the grandparents will have to present evidence to the court that it is indeed best for the child to have visits with them. In order to do this effectively, many grandparents in the Phoenix area seek out professional legal assistance.