Grandparent Visitation: New Health Study

On behalf of Ronald H. Kauffman, P.A. posted in Grandparent Rights on Thursday, April 24, 2014.

Grandparent rights to visitation are in the news. A new study shows the effects of grandparent child custody on improving cognition. Is improving the health and well-being of a grandparent a valid concern in the grandparent visitation debate?

A recent study out of Australia found that the amount of time spent minding grandchildren predicted differences in cognitive performance. The study revealed:

The highest cognitive scores for most tests were seen in participants who minded grandchildren for 1 day a week. It was also a significant positive predictor of immediate recall performance

However, minding grandchildren for 5 days or more per week predicted lower performance.

The study suggest that spending 1 day a week minding grandchildren was optimal for cognition, but minding grandchildren for 5 days or more per week may have led to lower working memory performance and processing speed.

These results indicate that highly frequent grandparent visitation predicts lower cognitive performance.

My article, Bleeding Grandparent Visitation Rights is available for download at the Florida Bar’s website. The article examined the history of grandparent visitation rights in Florida, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Troxel v. Granville, 530 U.S. 57 (2000) and the recently enacted Florida Statute §61.13002(2) in light of Florida and U.S. Supreme Court cases.

Grandparent rights of visitation in Florida has been a highly litigated and bitter fight. This new study sheds a little more light on the debate. Namely, should the health and cognitive impact on grandparent visitation be of concern to a court or the legislature?

An Abstract of the study can be found here.