In Ohio, grandparents may be granted visitation as part of a divorce, dissolution of marriage, legal separation, annulment, or child support proceeding. The court may grant "reasonable companionship or visitation rights" to any grandparent with an interest in the child's welfare, as determined by the court, if such visitation is in the best interest of the child. Such visitation rights are not limited to grandparents but may be sought by "any person related to the child by consanguinity or affinity," with the same conditions applying.
The court should consider factors including but not limited to the following:
- The geographical location of the grandparent's residence and the distance from the child’s residence
- The child’s and parents’ available time, including schedules for employment, school, holidays and vacations
- The child's age
- The child's adjustment at home and school and in the community
- Any wishes of the child, as expressed in chambers
- The child's health and safety
- The availability of time for the child to be with his or her siblings
- The mental and physical health of all parties
- The willingness of the grandparent to reschedule missed visitation
- Any conviction of the grandparent or guilty plea by the grandparent involving a crime of child abuse or child neglect
- The wishes and concerns of the parents as expressed to the court
- Any other factor in the best interest of the child.
A grandparent who is the parent of a deceased parent may seek visitation with a grandchild who is the child of the deceased. In the case of unmarried parents, grandparents may seek visitation, although paternity must be acknowledged and legalized before paternal grandparents may seek visitation. In cases involving deceased parents or unmarried parents, the court is instructed to consider the same factors listed above.
Visitation rights may survive after adoption if the adopting party is a stepparent.
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