Under Colorado law, visitation rights are based on the best interest of the child. The state of Colorado also recognizes the parents’ rights in determining the upbringing of their child and their decision regarding who visits their children. Various court rulings have differed in regard to grandparent visitation. Even so, there are basic guidelines provided by Colorado law, and grandparents can petition a Colorado family law court for reasonable grandchild visitation rights under the following circumstances:
- The grandchild’s parents have obtained a dissolution, annulment, or legal separation;
- The child has been placed into the legal custody of someone other than a parent; or
- The child’s parent, who is the child of the grandparent that is seeking visitation, has died.
If the court feels that grandparent visitation is in the best interest of the child, it will usually rule in favor of visitation.
If both natural parents are alive and there have been no previous Colorado court actions, the parents’ decisions regarding visitation remain unchallenged by the legal system, and grandparents may not seek visitation rights through the courts.