Having conversations with former in-laws about parenting time during Thanksgiving can be an awkward proposition. After all, the relationship with the child’s other parent is essentially over, and depending on how it ended, this may be a good thing. However, there are other relatives in the child’s life that wish to continue a relationship; most importantly, grandparents.
However, when it comes to asking for parenting time, some parents may hold a grudge against the other parent’s entire family, especially if there was a contentious custody battle. Nevertheless, Thanksgiving (like Christmas, Hanukah and other holiday celebrations) are meant for family. Be that as it may, grandparents may still have problems spending time with their grandchildren if a custodial parent denies access.
In these situations, grandparents are not without opportunities to assert their rights. They can petition the court for parenting time just like a biological parent would. Essentially, they would have to show that it would be in the child’s best interests to share time (or have a specific visitation schedule imposed) with a grandparent. With a court-ordered schedule, a grandparent would have time that would be protected by law to spend with a grandchild. This would be very beneficial during the holiday season.
So if it has become difficult as a grandparent to get time with a grandchild, and the custodial parent appears to be thwarting your efforts, it is worth talking with an experienced family law attorney about your experiences so that you can learn whether a motion would be helpful to your interests.
Source: Family.findlaw.com, “Requirements for awarding grandparent visitation and custody,”