South Carolina Family Court has jurisdiction to order visitation for grandparents under certain circumstances. If either or both parents of the minor child are deceased, or are divorced, or living separately, the court has authority to order visitation with the grandparent if:
- the child’s parents or guardians are unreasonably depriving the grandparent of the opportunity to visit with the child – including denying visitation for a period of more than 90 days, and
- the grandparent maintained a relationship similar to a parent-child relationship with the minor child, and
- awarding grandparent visitation would not interfere with the parent-child relationship, and
- the Court finds that the child’s parents or guardians are unfit — or that there are compelling circumstances to overcome the presumption that the parental decision is in the child’s best interest.
“Grandparent” includes a natural or adoptive parent of any parent to a minor child. South Carolina Statutes 63-3-530 was updated in 2010 to specify the circumstances under which the Family Court has jurisdiction to order grandparent visitation.
Contact attorney Karen S. Hindson if you have questions about whether grandparent visitation might be appropriate in your case.