Sixteen years after Troxel v. Granville, 530 U.S. 57 (2000), grandparent visitation is alive and well in Maryland. In Troxel, Justice Sandra Day O’Connor noted, “The demographic changes of the past century makes it difficult to speak of an average American family. The composition of families varies greatly from household to household.” Indeed, the last 16 years have only enhanced this sentiment. Given continued high levels of divorce and out-of-wedlock births, the role of grandparents (or other family members) continues to be an important source of stability in some families.
Maryland law is still trying to adapt to the decision in Troxel, while still upholding a parent’s right to raise their child without interference of the State, and ensuring that a child’s best interest is being met.