Can Grandparents Get Custody or Access
There are situations in which Grandparents can obtain custody or access orders in their favour.
While there is a presumption that the parents of a child are equally entitled to custody, there is no
such presumption for grandparents. Grandparents only have rights to the children pursuant to
Grandparents should appreciate that courts will not interfere in custody and access arrangements
for any but the most serious of reasons. And by starting a court action against the parents, they
may be severely damage the relationship they have with the parents.
It goes without saying that grandparents are well advised to seek court intervention in only the
most serious of cases; cases that involve major parenting issues that affects the best interests of
the children. It is normally not sufficient to indicate that you have been denied access, a decision
that parents have control over, as an aspect of custody.
There is an underlying assumption in decided cases, that access should remain in the discretion
of the parents. It is not enough to show that access to the grandparents might be beneficial to the
The ultimate test in any custody or access application will distill down to what is in the best
interests of the child. See the contents of section 24 of the Children’s Law Reform Act under
Please note: If you are involved in a matrimonial dispute, we
strongly recommend that you retain a lawyer to represent
you at the first possible opportunity;
This site and this note are designed only to acquaint you with a
few (and only a few) of the issues that may affect you.
It is not intended as legal advice on any specific case.
You are well advised to retain the services of an
experienced lawyer as soon as possible.