Denied Access to Your Children? Here’s What You Can Do
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Firstly, understand that you are not alone. While this can be an extremely distressing experience, working with our experts can make it a short-lived one. Thousands of people have been through what you’re going through and achieved a positive outcome. Furthermore, we have a strong track record of helping estranged families come to a workable resolution.
The welfare of the children is the top priority for the courts, so much so, that they have a specific checklist which they use to determine what is in the best interests of the child. In most cases the courts will grant access, although in some circumstances the access may come with certain restrictions.
Going to court isn’t always necessary however. Initially, you should try to contact your ex-partner directly. If communication has broken down completely, write them a letter requesting that they re-instate access. Send this recorded and keep your proof of postage. Also keep a copy of the letter for your records. The letter should detail your request, be dated and signed.
Should this approach not yield a response in a reasonable timeframe, then you may have no alternative but to take legal action. Sometimes, after the breakdown of a relationship, children can unfortunately be used as weapons. This may be to cause you pain, or it could be a ploy to bargain harder during any impending divorce proceedings.
In a lot of cases time can heal the wounds. Your ex-partner may opt to re-instate access after they have had time to digest the new situation, and rationally consider the child’s welfare, rather than just their own feelings.
Should this not manifest in your situation, legal action will be necessary to force re-instatement of access. We can help with the proceedings that need to be issued for a court to determine the outcome.
This would usually involve applying for a Contact Order. Contact Orders are legally binding, dictating the access rights of each parent. If the directions within the Contact Order aren’t followed by either parent, an appeal can be made to the court. The parent refusing access at this point, can be liable for further legal action – including being held in contempt of court.
Rather than taking further legal action at this point, mediation may be a viable alternative – a less stressful and informal way of coming to a resolution. If you do consider taking further legal action, you need to consider how this could impact the child – should your ex end up in serious trouble as a result. If they were penalised with a heavy fine or in some circumstances, a jail term, the children may suffer as a result.
Whatever your individual circumstances, the Family team at DRN are here for you and your family. With a sympathetic ear and decades of experience, we will work with you every step of the way, until a solution is found that benefits all parties. Give us a call today on 01282 433 241, to have an initial chat.