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The importance of wider family in child contact disputes
We’re delighted to be supporting World Child Contact day, an annual event which highlights the difficulties faced by the many families who are affected by child residence and contact issues.
As experienced family law solicitors, we regularly support parents who are being denied contact with their child. There are a number of ways in which we can help you re-establish contact, from family mediation and collaborative law through to applying to court, as a last resort.
But as this case study demonstrates, maintaining a positive relationship with the wider family can have benefits for everyone involved, even if your relationship has broken down entirely.
Our family law solicitors recently acted on behalf of a father who had concerns about his daughter’s contact with her mother.
The child’s parents shared the same ethnic origins; however the father had left their community and lived some distance from his former partner. The court had granted him residence of their 6 year old daughter.
The father was keen for mother and daughter to maintain a good relationship and he actively encouraged them to spend time together. However the mother repeatedly kept their child after contact had ended and this resulted in her missing time at school.
The situation continued until we made an emergency application to court for the child to be returned to her father, but this was complicated by the fact that we didn’t know exactly where the mother was. The father was also concerned that community could close ranks and the child would be impossible to trace.
These fears were unfounded however and the maternal grandparents were more cooperative than expected. As a result, the child was returned to her home after a short delay.
With support from the maternal grandparents, we were able to negotiate an agreement on the contact issues. The father and maternal grandparents were able to build trust and the grandparents agreed to supervise contact between the child and her mother.
The child and her grandparents were also able to develop a good relationship and this ensured that she was able to spend time with them and connect with her heritage and community.
We offer all new family clients a free 30 minute consultation to discuss your options and we can also advise grandparents, as well as other family members.