Grandparents: Apply to Court for Order to see Grandchildren

How to get a Court Order to see your Grandchild 

If a Grandparent isn’t getting to see, spend time or communicate appropriately with their Grandchild or Grandchildren, they are entitled to ask the Court to make an Order which sets out the time they are to spend with their Grandchild.  This is because the Court considers it the right of the chid to enjoy a relationship with close extended family members.

If an Application is made to the Court for an Order for a Child to communicate with, or spend time with their Grandparent, the primary consideration for the Court is what is in the best interests of the child.

Grandparents can seek an order to:

  • Spend time with their Grandchild;
  • Be able to telephone their Grandchild and speak with them;
  • Have indirect contact with their Grandchild by being able to send letters, emails, gifts, birthday and christmas cards, sms text messages etc.

As well as other issues, the court will consider:



  • The connection between the Child and the Grandparent(s).
  • The nature of the relationship between the Child and their Grandparent(s).
  • The likely effect of any changes in the Child’s circumstances, including the likely effect on the Child of any separation from a Grandparent.
  • Whether the Grandparent’s Application to spend time with the child might potentially be harmful to the Child’s well-being.
  • The capacity of the Grandparent(s) to provide for the needs of the Child, including emotional and intellectual needs.

The Court usually recognises that Grandparents play an invaluable role in the lives of their Grandchildren.

On that basis, unless there is evidence of abuse or violence, it is rare that a Court would not make an Order for a Child to spend time with their Grandparent.

The Court will usually be looking to see whether the relationship between the Child and their Grandparent is meaningful, on-going and is of significant benefit to the Child’s life.

Grandparents time with Grandchildren: More Information

We also have the following information sheets on the topic of Grandparents spending time with their Grandchildren, Grandparents rights and similar issues facing Grandparents:


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