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Domestic Relations Law 72
DRL 72: Special proceeding or habeas corpus to obtain visitation rights or custody in respect to certain infant grandchildren.



DRL 72

Special proceeding or habeas corpus to obtain visitation rights or custody in respect to certain infant grandchildren.


1.  Where  either  or  both of the parents of a minor child, residing within this state, is  or are deceased, or where circumstances show that conditions exist which  equity would see fit to intervene, a grandparent or the grandparents  of  such  child  may  apply  to  the  supreme  court by commencing a special  proceeding or for a writ of habeas corpus to  have  such  child  brought  before  such  court,  or  may  apply  to  the  family  court pursuant to  subdivision (b) of section six hundred fifty-one  of  the  family  court  act; and on the return thereof, the court, by order, after due notice to  the  parent  or  any other person or party having the care, custody, and  control of such child, to be given in such manner  as  the  court  shall  prescribe,  may  make  such directions as the best interest of the child  may require, for visitation rights for such grandparent or  grandparents  in respect to such child.


2.  (a)  Where  a  grandparent  or  the grandparents of a minor child,  residing within this state, can demonstrate to the satisfaction  of  the  court  the existence of extraordinary circumstances, such grandparent or  grandparents of such child may apply to the supreme court by  commencing  a  special  proceeding or for a writ of habeas corpus to have such child  brought before such court, or may apply  to  family  court  pursuant  to  subdivision  (b)  of  section  six hundred fifty-one of the family court  act; and on the return thereof, the court, by order, after due notice to  the parent or any other person or party having the  care,  custody,  and  control  of  such  child,  to be given in such manner as the court shall  prescribe, may make such directions as the best interests of  the  child  may  require, for custody rights for such grandparent or grandparents in  respect to such child. An extended disruption of custody, as  such  term  is   defined   in   this  section,  shall  constitute  an  extraordinary  circumstance.


(b) For the purposes of this section "extended disruption of  custody"  shall  include,  but  not  be  limited to, a prolonged separation of the  respondent parent and the child  for  at  least  twenty-four  continuous  months during which the parent voluntarily relinquished care and control  of  the  child  and the child resided in the household of the petitioner  grandparent or grandparents, provided, however, that the court may  find  that  extraordinary  circumstances exist should the prolonged separation
  have lasted for less than twenty-four months.


    (c) Nothing in this section shall limit  the  ability  of  parties  to  enter  into  consensual  custody  agreements  absent  the  existence  of  extraordinary circumstances.




This section of the Domestic Relations Law is provided as part of a free educational service by J. Douglas Barics, attorney at law for reference only. Statutes and codes such as DRL 72 are frequently amended, and no representation is made that the above version of DRL 72 is current. Updated statutes and codes may be available at the New York State Legislature Website. No statute should be relied on without understanding controlling case law which may further interpret it. An attorney should be consulted for legal advice.


If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact Mr. Barics at lawyer@jdbar.com or (631) 864-2600. For more articles and information, please visit www.jdbar.com.


J. Douglas Barics, Esq. – Divorce, family, matrimonial, trial and appeals lawyer in Long Island, New York



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