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Woman fights for rights to see her 99-year-old dad

Sandy Baksys and her father at Christmas 2003. (Sandy Baksys)

A Springfield woman is fighting to get visitation rights for her elderly father has the statehouse involved.

House Bill 4309 would allow families to file for visitation rights in court.

Rep. Sara Wojcicki Jimenez, R-Leland Grove, who is sponsoring the bill, got behind the idea after hearing it from her constituent, Sandy Baksys.

Baksys said she hasn’t seen her father since December 2016 because a family member who is caring for him won't allow her to visit.

Baksys said she went to her lawmaker in hopes of enacting change so this doesn’t happen to anyone else.

“I am hoping to feel that redemption that one can get from changing the law in a way the it really needs to be changed to help others,” Baksys said.

HB4309 would give people more rights when it comes to seeing their elderly parents.

“It does allow someone like her to file a petition with the court saying that she wants to visit her father under these circumstances and then a judge would decide,” Wojcicki Jimenez said.

It’s important to point out this bill only focuses on visitation, not on guardianship or rights to a person’s estate.

Baksys said it might be too late for her family, but she hopes others can benefit from this legislation.

“I don’t think the law is going to make a big difference for me because my father is already almost 99 years old and has lost the ability to talk,” said Baksys.

This bill was unanimously voted out of the House two weeks ago.

It was discussed Tuesday in a Senate committee, but wasn't called for a vote.

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