Brazil law boosts grandparents visitation rights

A bill that strengthens grandparents' right to visit their grandchildren when the parents are divorced took effect Tuesday in Brazil.

President Dilma Rousseff's approval was published in the official gazette.

The new law approved by Congress this month explicitly mentions that grandparents can have visitation rights "according to criteria established by a judge in accordance with the best interests of the child or adolescent." The previous law did not mention a right for grandparents.

Leania Almeida an adviser to the bill's sponsor, Congressman Luiz Couto, said the bill was first introduced in 2001 and had nothing to do with the case of a 10-year-old boy who was said the new law had no relation to the case of Sean Goldman, the 10-year-old boy from the U.S. who was the center of a bitter international custody dispute.