Washington County Family Law Attorneys Advocate for Grandparents’ Rights

Providing experienced legal representation throughout Washington County, Dakota County, Burnsville, Stillwater and Woodbury, MN

At Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., we understand the important role grandparents play in their grandchildren’s lives. When your child’s death or divorce threatens the relationship you enjoy with your grandchildren, we can help you seek visitation time. The law in this area is undergoing rapid change, so it’s wise to choose a law firm that focuses on family law. With more than 60 years ’ combined experience, our attorneys have the knowledge and skills to help you achieve your goals.

Can a grandparent get visitation rights or custody?

Minnesota law is clear that the rights of parents outweigh those of grandparents. But there are situations in which grandparents can win visitation rights with their grandchildren and even pursue child custody as a de facto custodian or interested third party.

Minnesota law identifies a number of situations that give courts the authority to grant visitation rights to grandparents:

  • If a parent of the child is deceased, the parents of the deceased parent may be granted reasonable visitation with their grandchild if it is in the best interests of the child and would not interfere with the parent-child relationship.
  • If the parents of a child are unmarried, separated or divorced, the court may grant reasonable visitation rights to the grandparents.
  • If the child has resided with the grandparents for 12 months or more and is subsequently removed from the home by the child’s parents, a court may grant reasonable visitation rights to the grandparents.
  • If a grandchild is adopted by a stepparent via termination of parental rights of the parent who is the child of the grandparents, the grandparents may be granted reasonable visitation rights.

Can grandparent visitation be modified or terminated?

When it’s awarded, grandparent visitation is part of the child’s custody arrangement. Like any part of a custody arrangement, grandparent visitation is subject to modification if a parent or other interested party successfully petitions the court for a change in the custody order.

Any visitation rights granted to grandparents before the adoption of a child by anyone other than a stepparent are automatically terminated when the adoption is final.

Call our lawyers for answers to your questions about grandparents’ rights

At Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A., we help grandparents maintain their relationships with their grandchildren. We represent families and individuals throughout Minnesota, including in Washington County, Dakota County, Burnsville, Eagan and Woodbury, MN. There is no charge for initial consultations, and flexible scheduling is available. Call us today at 651-379-3024 or contact us online to arrange an appointment.

Contact the Firm


Appelhof, Pfeifer & Hart, P.A.


20856 Holyoke Avenue,
P.O. Box 369,
Lakeville, Minnesota 55044