The relationship between children and grandparents may seem like one of the most natural things in the world, but it’s often a family law minefield.
When divorce, violence or abandonment shatters a family, grandparents can find themselves without support or legal options. After a relationship breakdown, it is often difficult for Grandparents (and other relatives such as uncles and aunts etc.) to maintain contact with children embroiled in a family law dispute.
Often, Grandparents will have played a significant and important role in the upbringing and nurturing of the children; in today’s day and age, it is common for grandparents to care for their grandchildren whilst their parents are at work.
Children have a right to enjoy relationships that are supportive of them, to take away the people that have had significant involvement in the children’s lives can have a detrimental impact on their emotional and developmental well-being. The Court will always regard the best interests of the children as the paramount consideration.
Grandparents can institute proceedings seeking parenting orders in relation to grandchildren. Each matter will depend upon the particular facts and peculiarities of circumstances relating to the children. However, in general Grandparents or other important relatives of the child/ren, do have the ability to negotiate and to seek Orders for ongoing contact with children. If this is considered in the children’s best interest then the Family Court/Federal Circuit Court will try to facilitate such contact.
In a lot of situations, it is extremely difficult where there is a high level of conflict between the parents, for the Court to juggle parents and/or other people’s desire to see the children when it must also resolve the very difficult issue of the parents’ conflict surrounding children.
We can provide you with further detailed advice on how to negotiate and best reach an agreement to enable you to spend time with your Grandchildren.