Displaying items by tag: People

Saturday, 10 September 2016 17:41

Dads - Scheduling Access to your Children

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Are you a separated Dad and not enjoying valuable time with your children?

Many Dad's who are separated, find themselves in a situation where their partners are seemingly withholding the children from them.

They may have had an informal agreement, or even a parenting plan when they felt assured their former partner valued the Dad's relationship with their children, and indicated they were very willing to support this ongoing contact. (This scenario can occur with either parent whether the Mum or the Dad).

It can be very confusing and frustrating when all of a sudden, you find that the time you had previously spent with the children seems to be diminishing.  Excuses are repeatedly given as to why your next scheduled visit cannot occur.   

What is the Children's other parent really thinking? 

You may be tempted to think that the other parent is being vindictive and deliberately denying you access to the children.  But invariably, the motivation is based on that parent's own fears.  The parent may be fearing that if the children's relationship with the father is positive, and the children come back to the mother appearing happy, then that somehow threatens the strength of the mother's relationship. The mother may interpret this situation as leading to the loss of her relationship with the children. If this is the fear, then the natural response will be to try to hold the children closer to her. There can, however, be many other reasons that motivate such behaviour.  Whatever that situation is, seek help to get it resolved.

What can I do about it?

It is important to address this issue immediately. If you are the parent whose time with your children is being impacted, the first step would be to raise it with the other parent in a neutral way, requesting that the agreed arrangement be reinstated. If you don't get a positive response from the other parent, then advise them that you are concerned about the change in arrangements and that you wish to seek assistance to resolve the problem. If you have a parenting plan, there is usually a clause in the plan that states what actions you have agreed to take if issues arise that you are having difficulty resolving. This may be to book a session with your Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner to resolve the issue. Take the steps to engage the nominated person at a mutually convenient time. 



Saturday, 10 September 2016 17:40

Grandparents - Your right to see your grandchildren

Are you a grandparent, supportive relative or close family friend, and denied the right to spend time with the children of a separated couple?

You have the right to continue the relationship you have had with the children of a separated couple. In fact it is imperative that the relationships children have had when the family unit was together, are maintained as much as possible. The aim is to avoid unnecessary disruption to the children's lives.  

This is encouraged through the Family Law Act. 

The Best way to have your Rights Recongnized

Do you know if a Parenting Plan is in place? The best way to ensure contact with your grandchildren / neices/ nephews or children of close frends who are separated and who have been an important part of your chidren's lives, is to have the negotiated arrangements written into a Parenting Plan. A Parenting Plan is established through the help of a trained Mediator or Family Dispute Practitioner who will assist the parties (parents, carers and signifcant others) to negotiate these arrangements. 

A parenting plan may already have been set up, but a new plan can be made to replace it. A Parenting Plan can also be submitted to the Family Court as Consent Orders. Then it becomes legally binding.

If you are a grandparent, carer or significant person in the child's life, contact us for a confidential and FREE 30 min discussion. We will help you work out what steps you can take to help. 

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