With ever changing family structures, grandparents are frequently playing a significant role in their grandchildren’s lives. Many parents now rely upon grandparents to provide essential childcare or even accommodation for their grandchildren.
Being denied a relationship with your grandchildren is understandably very distressing, not only for the grandparent but also for the children. It is very difficult for a child to understand why a previously close member of their family is suddenly no longer a regular part of their lives.
In the event that you are denied contact with your grandchildren there are steps that you can take to try to find a solution.
Initially we recommend that you try to resolve matters in an amicable way. This may be through a specialist Solicitor, or with the help of a trained mediator or collaborative lawyer.
If these methods prove unsuccessful then you may need to consider making an application to the Court for a Child Arrangements Order. This is a formal Court Order which sets out the times that the children must be made available to spend time with another person, such as a grandparent.
Grandparents do not have an automatic right to apply for a Child Arrangements Order so you will firstly need to seek permission from the Court. The Court will only deny permission if there is a significant issue which would mean that the application is not in the child’s best interest, such as criminal convictions or a history of abuse by the person applying.