Contact is the legal term that describes the specified times and dates that the non-residing parent has with their child. This was previously known as access.
A non-residing parent is the parent who the child doesn’t live with on a daily basis. If two individuals both possess PR&Rs and cannot agree on the extent of the contact a child should have with the non-residing parent, they may wish to apply to the court for assistance with the matter. The court has the power to decide on and resolve the dispute, and will give great importance to the child’s welfare when making the decision. A parent who holds PR&Rs for a child has a legal right to have regular and consistent contact with the child, if the child does not live with them on a daily basis.
It is also important to note that in Scots Law, grandparents do not have any immediate rights regarding contact with their grandchildren. The Court will however, consider the child’s welfare to a large degree when assessing the appropriateness of any Court orders.
The court may order direct contact, allowing unsupervised or supervised visits, or allow the child to stay with the non-residing parent temporarily. In some cases, the court order will only allow indirect contact, such as email or telephone calls.
If you have parental rights and responsibilites and need support to establish child contact, our experienced family lawyers can help. Alternatively, if you are an unmarried parent or another relevant person in the child’s life and are looking to have more structured involvement in the child’s life, contact us to find out what steps can be taken to assist you with this.