What Rights Do Teenagers Have During A Divorce?

June 7, 2023

Son,Covers,His,Face,,Suffers,As,Parents,Argue,Behind,HimWhat Rights Do Teenagers Have During A Divorce?

Divorce is a challenging process, and it is often harder for teenagers to deal with it than younger children. Divorcing parents sometimes forget that their teenagers also go through a difficult time during the divorce process. However, teenagers are entitled to certain rights that often go unnoticed but need to be taken care of. In this blog post, we will talk about the rights of teenagers during a divorce and how parents can support them during the challenging period of their lives.

Right to be informed

One of the most important rights of teenagers during a divorce is the right to be informed. It is understandable that parents may keep certain information from younger children, but teenagers should be told the whole truth. They need to know what is happening, why it is happening, and what the future holds for them. Teenagers who are kept in the dark may feel unimportant and unloved, which can lead to resentment and personality changes.

Right to express their feelings

Teenagers should have the right to express their emotions and talk about their feelings during the divorce process. They may worry about their future, the change in living arrangements, their education, and their relationships with family members. They also may feel frustrated and angry about their parent’s decision to divorce and the changes that come with it. Parents should make time to listen to their teenagers, and also ensure they have access to professional support when necessary. Being heard can often make teenagers feel better and less alone.

Right to choose their relationship with both parents

As teenagers become more independent, they often develop a closer relationship with one parent than the other. While it is natural for parents to feel hurt when this happens, parents should remember that teenagers have the right to choose their own relationship with both parents. Parents should facilitate this and not put their child in a situation where they feel pressured or guilty about wanting to spend time with either parent.

Right to maintain a relationship with siblings and extended family members

When parents divorce, teenagers often worry about their sibling’s relationships with them and their extended family. For example, they worry about the potential loss of contact with their grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Teenagers have the right to maintain their relationship with their siblings and extended family members, even if their parents are no longer together. Where it is safe and practical, parents should support the teenage’s relationship with their siblings and extended family members.

Right to schooling and extracurricular activities

Divorce can interrupt a teenager’s schooling and extracurricular activities. Parents should ensure that their child’s education and social activities remain a top priority during the divorce process. This means that parents need to work together to make sure that the teenager’s schoolwork is not disrupted during the divorce process and that their extracurricular activities continue as usual. Additionally, parents sometimes need to provide transportation to and from these activities if the teenager’s ability to do them is negatively impacted by the divorce.

Right to a secure and safe living situation

Divorce can lead to a decrease in the standard of living, however, teenagers have the right to a secure and safe living situation. This means that parents should work together to ensure that their child’s living conditions are stable and that their child has access to all the necessary resources. For example, the teenager should have a secure place to live, clothing, enough food, medical care, and access to transportation.

Right to suitable custody arrangements

In some cases, parents may strike an agreement on parental custody arrangements in the presence of teenagers, but the teens themselves should have a say in the matter. If the teenager has a preference for one parent over the other, the court will typically take that into consideration when making custody arrangements. The teenager will usually express a preference based on factors such as the parent’s history, the living arrangements after the divorce, and the nature of their relationship with each parent.


Divorce is often an emotionally draining and confusing process for everyone involved, especially teenagers. It is important for teenagers to know that they have rights during the divorce process. As parents, we should try to remember that our teenagers are also going through a difficult time, and we need to be there for them by supporting and helping them as they navigate through this challenging period. Ensuring that they are informed about what is happening, facilitating access to professional support, allowing them to have their feelings, maintaining a good relationship with them and other family members, and securing a safe environment are some ways in which parents can help support teenagers throughout the divorce process.

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Law Offices of Granoff & Kessler