Grandparents’ rights are an issue of growing importance here in Arizona and across the country. Whether married or not, when parents separate or divorce the grandparents of any children involved often feel disenfranchised. Courts and legislatures have attempted to address the issue of grandparents’ rights for years, and a recent case stretching between two states underscores the fact that the debate continues.
The controlling law is based upon a U.S. Supreme Court decision that recognized certain constitutional rights of parents to raise their own children. Despite that, one state near Arizona has had a grandparents’ rights statute on the books for at just about 20 years. A recent case pitting a mother against her own parents in another state has caused some to propose a new law seeking to restore the legal rights of parents. Others, however, claim the current law already accomplishes that.