Can grandparents obtain parenting orders?

It is often said that it takes a whole community to raise a child. Certainly a child’s extended family, particularly grandparents have a vital role to play in nurturing a child and contributing to their welfare and development.

In many families the grandparents or extended family have taken on the parenting role in circumstances where the child’s biological parents have passed away or are otherwise unable to care for the child due to, for example, health issues, drug and alcohol issues or family violence.

The Court is often called upon to decide cases where a grandparent or an extended family member, such as an aunt or uncle is seeking parenting orders in relation to a child. In such cases the Court will consider the application in the same way it would if the application were being made by a biological parent. That is, that neither parents nor extended family members (or any other interested person applying for parenting orders) has an automatic right to be granted parenting orders. Rather the Court will be guided by the question of what is in the best interest of the child which is the paramount consideration in all parenting matters.

If you require advice in relation to parenting matters, please give us a call on 1800 632 930.