Unfortunately, when a marriage breaks down or parents separate grandparents rights to access their grandchildren are not always high on the agenda for parents.
What are Grandparents rights?
Our family law team are frequently contacted by grandparents who have been denied access to their grandchildren after separation or divorce. Unfortunately there is no law in place giving automatic access to grandchildren.
Despite this family courts value the support and part grandparents play in their grandchildren’s life and will support a claim for access, unless there are any issues that would present this as an unsuitable option, such as neglect, abuse or violence.
Grandparents can’t automatically make an application for a contact order this is only available to those with parental responsibility such as, step-parents, parents or guardians. Grandparents can apply for permission to apply for a contact order before, if successful they can then apply to the family court for a contact order.
Grandparents rights Vs parents objection
The other issue that grandparents face after gaining permission to apply for a contact order is either of the parents objecting to the contact order.
If you are dealing with a parents objections to your contact order for grandparents rights come and see us for a free legal consultation to discuss your situation and how best to progress with your case. We offer fixed legal fees so you know from the outset the cost involved.
When you face objection to your contact order from both of the parents the only option is to attend family court for a full hearing, in which you will need to prove the importance you bear in your grandchildren’s life and that you have a consistent and meaningful relationship. Supporting evidence and witness statements will then be required.
If your contact order is successful it will clearly state the contact permitted on the grandparents rights terms such as, visits, letters, telephone calls etc and the frequency permitted according to the contact order.
In the event that your application for a contact order is unsuccessful the court will allow under grandparents rights that you have indirect contact allowing contact by letter, Xmas and birthday presents.
Grandparents rights – mediation
Our highly skilled and experienced family mediation service is a great option to attempt to agree and discuss the problems with an impartial and highly skilled mediator. Our mediation expert will sit down with the parents and grandparents and discuss an agreement for contact.
Our family mediation offers a high success rate in resolving family disputes in an amicable way and avoid the costs and stress of family court.