LawAnswers.com.au - Australia's #1 Legal Community

LawAnswers.com.au is a community of 10,000+ Australians, just like you, helping each other.
Ask a question, respond to a question and better understand the law today!
Join us, it only takes a minute:

QLD Grandparents Rights to See Grandson?

Discussion in 'Family Law Forum' started by Lisa K, 3 July 2015.

  1. Lisa K

    Lisa K Member

    Joined:
    3 July 2015
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    My 20 year old daughter left a DV ( domestic violence) situation with her 6 month old son in Nov 2014. We helped her to this and her and the baby lived with us for approx 4 months, then she moved into her own place close to us where we visited her several times a week, babysat the child overnight and on one occasion for several nights.

    She applied to the court for a DVO ( restraining order) on her ex partner which was granted after a hearing. The Father of the child also instigated family court proceedings. However after the interim hearing where the courts ordered him supervised access, regular Skype calls, attendance to anger management and parenting classes and the involvement of a family report officer, somehow he found his way to convince our daughter to move back in with him.

    Now we come to the present day where our daughter kept this a secret from us for over a month and just this week has informed us she moved back in with him on Tuesday (400KM Away). We have asked her what he has done to assure the domestic violence is not going to continue and what she is doing to protect the child. She won't answer and yell at us to "Stay out of her life". We have asked her when we can see the child again, she says we can drive 400km to see him anytime, but he is not leaving her sight and it has to be done in her home.

    Needless to say the relationship between us and the father is strained due to the fact he abused our daughter and has barely spoken 2 words to us or anyone in our family. He controls our daughter's money, he belittles her and he threatens her.

    I have called DOCS and they say there is nothing they can do as the child is not currently in danger, so we have to wait until the DV starts up again.

    My husband and I have grown very close to our grandson and he to us. This event has broken our hearts. He lived with us and was a significant part of his life for 8 months. He is now 13 months old. We just want to be able to continue our relationship with him. At that age they forget people so quickly. I really feel we have to keep an eye on the Family Violence as well but how to do that from 400km away, I have no idea.

    I would like him to spend up to a week with us every 3 months. I have MS so driving those long distances is difficult for me and would like them to assist with the travelling. (My daughter does not have a licence and the father refused to do this before she left him and even during the family court proceedings). I am also on a disability support pension so finances are tight.

    Do you think this request is too much, too little (not that I expect grandparents rights)? Any advice would be appreciated.

    Thank you.
     
  2. AllForHer

    AllForHer Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    23 July 2014
    Messages:
    2,319
    Likes Received:
    423
    Note that only children have any rights under the Family Law Act 1975, not parents, grandparents or any other person. Those rights are to know, spend time and communicate with people significant to their care on a regular basis.

    As a grandparent, you are a person significant to the child's care, welfare and development, so you can apply for parenting orders that ensure the child's rights will be upheld.

    The first step in this process is to organise a family dispute resolution conference with your daughter and her partner to try and reach agreement about care arrangements that enable you to spend time with the child. Legal Aid and Relationships Australia both offer this service, so you should call them to begin the process as soon as possible.

    If the parties refuse to attend or agreement cannot be reached, then the mediation will issue a s 60i certificate, which is a mandatory conponanent of an initiating application for parenting orders through the court.

    I don't think you should expect a week every three months until the child is a bit older - maybe three or four years of age. Even though your relationship with the child is healthy, a week is a very long time for a child of that age to be away from their primary attachment figure. Instead, you might aim for maybe two nights every two months and increase gradually. Bear in mind though that if the relationship between the child's parents is rocky, they'll likely break up in future and the child's time will have to be broken up between each of the parents. Time with grandparents always falls second to time with parents, so I'm not sure how viable a week every three months would be in those circumstances.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. Lisa K

    Lisa K Member

    Joined:
    3 July 2015
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    Thank you.
     

Share This Page

Loading...