Generally, a grandparent’s right to see their minor grandchild is derivative of the child’s parent’s right to parenting time. That is, the maternal grandparents have access to the child during the mother’s parenting time, and the paternal grandparents have access to the child during the father’s parenting time. In most cases, grandparents do not have the separate right to their own visitation unless their child, who is the parent of the subject minor child, is deceased.
However, Minnesota law does provide for the family court to award visitation to a grandparent if the court finds that such visitation would be in the best interests of the child and would not interfere with the parent-child relationship. The statute expressly directs the court to consider the amount of personal contact between the petitioning relative and the minor child prior to the application for relief.