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Do grandparents have legal rights to see their grandchildren in Australia? Family Court WA Mediation

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on Fri, 10/17/2014 - 22:29
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Do grandparents have legal rights to see their grandchildren in Australia? Family Court WA Mediation

Family Court WA Mediation

Before you go to court – read this

Grandparents play a significant role in their grandchildren’s lives. It is important for children’s emotional and social development, to maintain healthy relationships with their grandparents. This relationship supports children during times of family stress and breakdown.

Grandparents are often drawn in the conflict and disharmony that may arise during separation, impacting on their relationship and contact with their grandchildren. They may be restricted from spending time with their grandchildren due to a relationship breakdown between the parents of the children.

Grandparents often feel at a loss as to how to maintain contact with grandchildren, particularly when the parents are attending a Family Dispute Resolution process or court proceedings to reach agreement on time spent with the children.

For grandparents that wish to maintain a positive ongoing relationship with their grandchildren, Family Dispute Resolution may be an appropriate forum to discuss this. This includes grandparents that have spent time with their children regularly, if they are the primary carers of their grandchildren, or if there are any concerns regarding the children’s safety and well-being of the children in their parent’s care. It is strongly recommended that legal advice is received prior to attempting a Family Dispute Resolution process (see Recommended Family Lawyers).

What can grandparents do if communication with the parents of their grandchildren has broken down?

The following steps may be considered:

a)             Grandparents to attempt to come to an agreement with the parents, by directly communicating their views and possibly reach mutual agreements;

b)            If this is not possible then, grandparents may seek legal advice from a qualified Family Lawyer to consider starting court proceedings (if eligible for exceptions);

c)             Contact Mediator Style Resolution on 089467 5996 with a view to mediating an arrangement regarding time with the grandchildren. This process is mandatory if grandparents are not eligible for exceptions to seek Orders;

d)            If mediation is attempted or does not proceed then a Certificate under Section 60I of the Family Law Act may be requested from the Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner to reflect their level of involvement in the mediation process.

Legal considerations

The Family Law Act (FLA) 1975 (section 60(B)(2)(b)) states that children have the right to spend time on a regular basis with, and communicate on a regular basis with, both their parents and other people significant to their care, welfare and development (such as grandparents and other relatives). The children’s best interests are considered at all times.

The FLA promotes the resolution of family conflict by attending a Family Dispute Resolution process (mediation). This is a process that provides a safe space to attempt to resolve any conflict regarding children’s care and welfare, with an impartial third party. The outcome may be a Parenting Plan that includes agreements about grandparents spending time with their grandchildren.

If an agreement cannot be reached, then it may be necessary to seek Court Orders through the Family Court.

This Post is written by Douja Elhajj Principal Mediator at Aresolution if you would like to book a mediation session you can call 1300 ARESOLVE

This site is founded by Douja Elhajj the Principal Mediator at Aresolution.

Douja provides mediation to families in Perth Western Australia.

Douja is accredited with the Attorney General’s department and has over 5000hrs of experience as a Family Dispute Resolution Practitioner. Douja has created this website to answer some of the common questions that clients may have about family court and parenting (custody) during the separation process and to promote the services of credible family dispute resolution professionals that she is affiliated with.


As the Principal Mediator at Aresolution Douja ensures that her team delivers a service that has:


> Short waiting periods and intervals between sessions (14days)>

> Child-focused, collaborative approach

> Private and professional mediation and psychological support services

> A competitively priced service

> A support network of professionals


meatloaf's picture

Grandparents are cruely treated by Doc's. Eventhough you go to them for help , they turn you away implying you are interfering grandparent.

How could this be when our granchildren were being forced to take drugs and other serious things that will affect them. Plus being exposed to sexual predators as well as being serioulsy phsyically and verbally abused,

Guess what Pat Anderson permits this type of behaviour as she is the number one person who does more harm to children and killing them off as well. Just ask Arna Brosnan the Regional Director how her and Josie riley protects her to no end. So the public does not find out what is happening in the Far north regional area.

Grandparent suffer all the way. Our rights to see our grandchildren are taken away from us all. But if the child dies, guess who they call upon to pay for the funeral cost.

Certainly not doc's eventhough they are the biggest causers of it all.