It's a sad fact of life that separation and marriage break-ups can lead to people being unable to see their grandchildren. Our experienced family lawyers are here to assist you with the situation and can help you to re-establish contact with your grandchildren wherever possible.
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What rights do I have as a grandparent?
It's a sad fact of life that sometimes when a couple separate - or there is a major falling out between family members for another reason - access to children becomes an area of conflict.
Not only can this make life difficult for a non-resident parent after separation, it can sometimes make it impossible for grandparents to maintain contact with their grandchildren.
Naturally, this isn't ideal for the grandparents or the grandchildren. Unfortunately, the law doesn't give grandparents an automatic right to access.
However, that doesn't mean you have to give up on seeing your grandchildren, as our experienced family lawyers may still be able to help you, by recommending a simple, three-step plan of action.
Speak to the parents
If your son or daughter isn't the resident parent, it's possible that they are having their own problems in getting as much access to their child or children as they would like.
Having said that, your first step should always be to talk to both parents if possible and explain your feelings. If, for some reason, the parents aren't willing or able to help, our may be able to make contact on your behalf in an attempt to start an amicable dialogue.
Try to arrange mediation
In cases where the resident parent – or even both parents if the problem is a wider family falling out – isn't willing to grant access to grandparents, the next step is to seek independent mediation.
This involves all parties meeting on neutral territory, while a trained mediator helps to guide everyone towards a solution that puts the needs of the grandchildren first and foremost.
Seek a contact order in the family court
We believe that court action should always be the last resort in family disputes of this kind. Going to court is not only expensive; it can widen family rifts that might eventually have healed on their own.
Where this action is successful, a judge will make an order that ensures you are able to see your grandchildren regularly.
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