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When Your Ex-Partner Denies You Access

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 28 Sep 2020 | comments*Discuss
 
Contact Court Final Hearing Directions

If your ex-partner says she’s not going to let you have any contact with your children, it can be one of the most distressing things that can happen to you. There may be a number of reasons behind her decision but somehow they’re irrelevant; you simply want to be able to spend time with your kids. So what can you do to change the situation?

Why It Happens

There are several reasons why your ex might deny you access to your children.
  • It could be a bargaining chip for Divorce or legal proceedings yet to come
  • It might be revenge for the break-up of the relationship
  • In some instances, it’s even been used as a way to conceal a new relationship

Denial of contact, as it’s called legally, doesn’t necessarily happen immediately after your relationship ends. It can occur at any time until the child is of age.

What to Do About It

Your first step should be to send a registered letter to your ex-partner in which you ask her to reinstate contact between you and your children. Don't forget to take a copy of the letter for your records and keep your proof of sending. However, remember court is always seen as a last resort and you will usually have to show that you have both attended a Mediation Information & Assessment Meeting (MIAM) before you can apply.

If this produces no action, and/or your ex refuses to attend mediation, then you have no alternative but to go to court and ask for an Interim Contact Order. In order to obtain a contact order you will need to submit the correct form to the court, find out which form you need Here.

What Does the Interim Contact Order Do?

The interim contact order allows you to have contact with your children until a full court hearing resolves the matter one way or another. If your ex shows no opposition to interim contact, it can be resolved without a court appearance. However, at this stage that’s not likely to be the case.

What Kind of Contact Can you Expect in the Interim?

What you and your solicitor will have to do is remind the court at a “directions hearing” of the length of time before the full hearing will occur. This can often be six months or longer, which can be detrimental to your relationship with your child. In most instances, the court will allow some limited contact between you and your children in the interim, although it’s unlikely to be “staying contact” (allowing the children to stay overnight with you) if the mother objects. She might also demand supervised contact, and the court will generally accede. This all seems heavily weighted towards the mother, even though you might have done nothing wrong. However, it’s a case of the court opting to be cautious.

The Directions Hearing

Prior to the hearing you should inform both the opposing solicitor and the court itself that your side will ask for interim contact and be asking for oral evidence. This will avoid any adjournment. If you’ve had previous contact with your child before you were denied access, especially “staying contact”, you should provide evidence of this to the court, as it will bolster your argument.

The Final Hearing

One of the most important factors preceding the final hearing is the report by the Cafcass (Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) officer. He or she will interview you and your former partner, your children, if they’re old enough, as well as carers and teachers etc. Generally, the court will accept the report’s recommendations regarding custody and contact. If you disagree with the report, either in part or completely, you can ask for more information, or for another report by a different officer.

If You’re Still Denied Access

If your former partner denies you contact in defiance of an order laid down by the court, you can take her to court to demand access. However, before taking this step, think carefully, as it will not only make relations between the two of you worse, but could possibly end up with her fined or in jail, which will have an adverse affect on the children. If at all possible, you should Attempt Mediation first.

Check out the Separated Dads Forum... It's a great resource where you can ask for advice on topics including Child Access, Maintenance, CAFCASS, Fathers Rights, Court, Behaviour or simply to have a chat with other dads.

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My wife and I initially agreed I would have kids on a Friday, Saturday and Sunday night and arrange for kids to go to school. Her father used to do the school run but she has now turned her family against me. My older daughter helped me out for a while but it is getting too much for her as she does shift work. My wife then reduced my contact to every other weekend without an agreement, refuses to drop them off or pick them up. I work 9 am to 5.30pm, kids have to be in school 8.20 and 8.40. I don't have a car and there is no direct bus to the schools so it is impossible for me to get kids to school and me to work on time. I have now said I can no longer to Monday mornings so will bring kids back Sunday night after evening meal. She has now said she is going to refuse me access because I have changed the agreement. She has a car, has no job and only lives around 5 miles away yet refuses to come and get them on the Monday morning. The question is, can she do that? and what would a courts decision be about the Monday morning issue if we were to go down that route?
Derran - 28-Sep-20 @ 9:47 AM
Wow strugglin myself at moment new partner has threatened me blah blah but im still hangin on if required UK law could i legally bar him from being around my kids as its hindering my access?
John - 25-Sep-20 @ 11:30 PM
What if my exes new partner has threatened me can i have removed or barred from being around my children?
John - 25-Sep-20 @ 11:11 PM
@BWC you should return to court, apply for variation of order and request increased time. Your child should be spending overnightd with you by now.
Steve - 18-Sep-20 @ 11:13 PM
@Sunny you should try relationship counselling for both of you. Reminds me of petty nonsense that happened in my marriage.
Steve - 18-Sep-20 @ 11:10 PM
I've been married for 8 years now and have a angel of a child who is 12 months but my devil of a wife is always being horrible. It's something I've been putting up with since day one of marriage and was too gullible to think she would change for the better. I always cook our meals, help out in the house take her on international holidays every year. In return all I get is constant mood swings saying I don't do enough in the house, if I don't go to the supermarket straight away she will cause a big argument with verbal abuse. Now that we have a child she uses my daughter against me when she has a psychotic episode shewill take her out my hands physically and prevent me coming near her and if I do she starts shouting in front of my daughter which I hate her having to see. I really want to leave her but I know what she is capable of and the UK courts always favour the mother, she will prevent me from seeing her by making up excuses saying shes going out somewhere and saying bad things about me to my daughter as she gets older to turn her against me
Sunny - 6-Sep-20 @ 8:24 PM
I have tried twice to register to your forum and it has twice told me I am a suspected spammer... Can you help please??
Stick - 4-Sep-20 @ 9:25 AM
My son separatd from his ex 4years ago he as nothing but trouble from her. He has children with her he give her money for them he's even got shopping for them but that not good enough she s constantly phoning him morning noon and night shes thumped him kick him Iv seen it for myself his phone is on fire with her phoning him. She's using the children as weppons if she doesn't get what she wants she gets the children to go through is phone to see who is on and who's he seeingshes even broken is relationships up with the lies her house is a mess the children or very idle and leve thing anywhere I know she's asked im for money for a bills but got a tatoo with it he as bent backwards to help but she makes out that he doesn't do anything. I'VE been in the house my god I'd rather ther live on a tip hes even took her out for the day just to help but thats not good enough. Allway on the want I've even spooken to social services but they or no bothered they everything ok the way thay live in if would have been a man looking after the children it would not be good enough wy do they treat men different to women what's rong with equal rights or doesn't it matter for the men. Allso she tride to stab him the police as been out to see her about this incident but the abuse still goes on hes scared of not seeing his children he keeps quite about it what elsie can he do. It's rong how men or treated in this situation no wonder men take there lives when treated like this
Ford - 27-Aug-20 @ 9:45 AM
My son separatd from his ex 4years ago he as nothing but trouble from her. He has children with her he give her money for them he's even got shopping for them but that not good enough she s constantly phoning him morning noon and night shes thumped him kick him Iv seen it for myself his phone is on fire with her phoning him. She's using the children as weppons if she doesn't get what she wants she gets the children to go through is phone to see who is on and who's he seeingshes even broken is relationships up with the lies her house is a mess the children or very idle and leve thing anywhere I know she's asked im for money for a bills but got a tatoo with it he as bent backwards to help but she makes out that he doesn't do anything. I'VE been in the house my god I'd rather ther live on a tip hes even took her out for the day just to help but thats not good enough. Allway on the want I've even spooken to social services but they or no bothered they everything ok the way thay live in if would have been a man looking after the children it would not be good enough wy do they treat men different to women what's rong with equal rights or doesn't it matter for the men. Allso she tride to stab him the police as been out to see her about this incident but the abuse still goes on hes scared of not seeing his children he keeps quite about it what elsie can he do. It's rong how men or treated in this situation no wonder men take there lives when treated like this
Ford - 27-Aug-20 @ 9:45 AM
Ive already been through the court hearing in which i was granted a measly 2 hours a week with my son under supervision from my exs control freak mother or my judas mother who i have no contact with since she turnt her back on me to take my exs side so they wouldn't be shadowed out of my sons life like me yeah very supportive i know. Well my son sees me each week for his 2 hours and are bond is inseparable he idiolises me as i do him to the point he's got to the stage where he asks me each weekend to see me more and why he can't be around me more hes coming up 4 and is anything but stupid. So where do i stand in talking to my son about this and getting the time we both deserve with eachother as im being destroyed mentally as it is with not being around my son let alone knowing hes now being subject of child abuse by his vile mother with being used as a weapon against me without his thoughts being put into perspective atall.
BWC - 24-Aug-20 @ 8:54 PM
My Husband had a child with a woman 23 years older than him in 1989 and was allowed to see his son for 3 months before she disappeared it took him over a year to find her and he started legal proceedings to get access to his child. He offered her money for maintenance but she refused saying he was never going to see his child and she didn't want his money.He contacted a solicitor and a hearing was set up but she failed to show up eventually saying the child had been ill and she couldn't leave him.. It was adjourned for a future date and again she didn't show up. A 3rd date was set and she was summoned to appear. She came and made false comments that he was to pushy and aggressive and she didn't wan't him around her son. It was adjourned for investigation by social workers into his character. They found nothing and a report was prepared for the court. Another date was set and guess what... she didn't show up. They tried to serve papers on her again but she had moved. My Husband had run out of money to fight the case and decided to drop it at the time.He made several attempts over the years to find them but had no luck.Then in 2007 he got a letter from the old Child support service who claimed he owed 16 years of child maintenance (Child now 18)and would take him to court.He tried to fight it claiming he had offered money but she refused but they said he still had to pay. He paid for 2 years until he became seriously ill with Kidney failure at which time his payments were reduced to £5 a month. He is still paying it even though his son will be 31 soon.It is not that I object to him paying for his son or that I think he shouldn't owe it. Its more that the new service that have taken over contacted him a year ago to set up the new payments and they text him every 4 weeks to remind him to pay which he does by standing order and then this month they wrote him an annual review changed the date to calendar monthly on a date that is earlier than his 4 weekly payment was due to go out, claimed he hasn't paid, threatened court action by text and all of this is affecting his mental health. It is bad enough that he gets a monthly text reminder 31 years later that he has a Son out there that he has never been allowed to see but then it seems he will also be harassed on a yearly basis when they do their annual review. I am a mother myself and I would neverdream of keeping my Children away from their father, he had to deal with his alcoholism but still got supervised visits until he did sort himself out.Women should not be allowed to keep a child away from their father like this and if they do there should be consequences. Even now 30 years on it is he who is paying the price and I don't mean £5 a month I mean mentally.I traced his son a few years back who it seemed was still living with his mother in 2016 and sent him a letter explaining everything but had no reply. We have tried to look him up again earlier this year to find they have
Pip - 22-Aug-20 @ 10:24 AM
@sunrise, so your using your child as a weapon and a pawn in your chess game to hurt your ex then and admitting it that’s child abuse doesn’t matter what your ex has done to you he has done nothing to the kid and a father deserves every right as the mother any women who does that isn’t a mother or a parent and one day you won’t have that ammunition and the kid will grow to resent you when they are older stop and think of the kid other than yourself
Pete - 21-Aug-20 @ 2:55 AM
@Christopher Your insults are not constructive to advancing father’s rights and are not appreciated. If you’re not here to share your own story or to be supportive of others who are,then you are abusing this forum for your own malicious purposes and your post should be deleted.Furthermore, you are showing your ignorance by suggesting that these situations only happen in Texas, when the truth isa father can be alienated from his child in any state in the United States of America. This is a very painful issue for my our family, especially for my brother who did nothing to deserve to be barred from his daughter’s life.
Mimi - 19-Aug-20 @ 2:14 PM
@mimi. What is this post!! sum cousin loving hill billys from Texas can't see he's bloody daughter because the women was married to who ???.and old hubby getting out of jail a nd forgiven her for cheating .your all need to go on Jerry springer.
Christopher - 19-Aug-20 @ 11:39 AM
My brother found out on the day his daughter was born that the baby‘s mom was married. She said the reason she lied was because she figured he wouldn’t want to be with her if he knew she was married. She also said that her husband had just been sentenced to 3 years in prison when they first met met and my brother was so sweetand served as a nice distraction while her husband was locked up. She said the reason she’s finally telling him the truth is because her husband is being released from prison soon and he has forgiven her for cheating and has decided they will raise the baby together. She toldmy brother he could hold his daughterfor exactly 5 minutesbut would have to leavethe hospital afterwards, it was so sad. He tried to establish his rights but apparently men have no rights to their children when the woman is already married. Hetried to have his name put on thebirth certificate but in the state of Texas if a woman is married the husband is presumed to be the child’s father so his request was denied. He thenfiled child support on himself and had a petition for paternity drawn up but the mother had it dismissed.He consulted several lawyers and they all say the same thing: that there’s nothingthat can be donebecause she is the custodial parent and her husband is the father of record. Her husband is now out of jail and heposts pictures on Facebook with my niecelike she’shis daughter. So sickening. This is my brother’sonly child and unfortunately the law doesn’t allow him any recourse to have a relationship with his daughter because she was already married.
Mimi - 19-Aug-20 @ 9:39 AM
Well I know children should see their fathers but when a man emotionally abuses a woman and destroys her soul I think she has every right to keep that child away from him or give him little contact as possible . We are human and if someone hurts or destroys out life we will react in ways we thought we never would . My partner hurt me so bad and nearly destroyed me I only allow him 1 visit a week and how I see it he will add no value to my child’s life because ofthe person he is . I would never stop complete contact but I keep it minimum.
Sunrise - 15-Aug-20 @ 9:05 PM
My ex has stopped me seey my daughter and we have a court order saying I see her every week end and she's stopped blocked me on everything and I don't no wat to do I have got forms for a motion of contempt and sent them to court and I'm waiting
Dreas - 6-Aug-20 @ 9:19 PM
I broke up with my ex girlfriend before the birth of our son, since she gave birth I was never allowed to see or do anything for our son. After birth i tried to contact her & she never wanted to hear a word from me. She even changed her number & since i moved from Mpumalanga to Limpopo im scared to show up without informing her as that can make her feel uncomfortable. I really need to father my son. I grew up without a father & i don't want my son to go through that.
BOVA - 4-Aug-20 @ 10:57 PM
I just split up with my ex. She had 2 children that I bonded with for 8 yrs. One of them since she was 6 weeks old. Now she won't let me see or talk to them. Its crushing me. Do I have any rights to them?
Timbo - 31-Jul-20 @ 5:37 PM
Hi, I'm after a bit of advice, my ex kicked me out just over 2 months ago, for 5 or 6 weeks before that I was sleeping on the sofa and we weren't really together for quite a while before that, since she kicked me out I've met someone, not intending to, I wasn't looking for anyone but it's just happened, in this time she has stopped me seeing my girl because I wanted to see her more and she said no so I said about mediation and that's it I can't even contact her now. I just want advise on wether I should let her know I've met someone or not before mediation contact her! I think I should so there is no lies and she then can't stop me again when she finds out
Tel - 23-Jul-20 @ 12:44 PM
I have 18yrs son who is severely autistic and non verbal His mum is his power of attorney.i have Been to the solicitors and citizen advise and there’s nothing they can do because of his ageit’s up to his mum .I have not seen my son for very long time .I ended up in a mental health hospital for 4 months and still in there care (outpatient) .Breaks my heart everyday .I send cards and Christmas cards but never nothing back
Phil - 21-Jul-20 @ 5:07 PM
@carlos.if the child’s mother reads this sorry for threatening you and for causing trouble with my messages I can guarantee it will never happen again .i Pulled myself together now got the help I needed and on the right( meds and seeing a psychologist every week).now I have a fully understanding of the situation and realise now finally that I never had a (child in reality it’s was imaginary ).the messages I sent you are nothing but( rubbish) I was (very ill mentally) when I was sending them .so sorry for that .and to this site sorry for all the messages I am not even father in reality so sorry for taking up space when it could be used for someone who really needs this site .i guarantee and give my word this is my final post .god bless
C w laurie - 17-Jun-20 @ 1:30 AM
@carlos.i even apologised to my uncle and told him like it’s ok if the child is yours you should go see her if you want .and I would apologise to the child’s mother for threatening her .now I am on (my pills) I have a (firm grip on reality) and now can finally move on properly .and don’t blame myself anymore because the child is not mine i don’t need to do anything expect move on with my life .
C w laurie - 16-Jun-20 @ 10:15 PM
@carlos.i lost the plot there for while but have finally found my feet again .and made the decision to let the child and mother get on with there life .i sat and thought about my situation and realised( I am not a father and didn’t have any rights to lose in the first place and worked myself up over nothing) .after my (mental breakdown i realised how sick I was )I wasn’t even in a relationship with this women she was in relationship with my uncle .and I feel so ashamed of myself for bothering them but hey I am not perfect and can guarantee it will never happen again .(now it’s time to get on with my life) .if the child’s mother reads this hey sorry for bothing you and best of luck in the future for your family.Take care and god bless .
C w laurie - 16-Jun-20 @ 9:31 PM
This is the 21st century and it is time for equality in being a parent was made a legal right. If not then things will just get worse for our sons. I am beginning the battle for my son to have a balanced upbringing for the current time but also for if he has to go through the same process when he has is own family. Stopping contact is child abuse and coercive control and needs to be consider such in Law. Right to your MP’s today.
Carlos - 16-Jun-20 @ 6:23 AM
My ex says I can only see my child at her house and not aloud to take her out .there are no drug or violence issues .surely this isn't right
Kiki - 12-Jun-20 @ 9:03 AM
So recently my ex partner has stopped me from seeing my son because she got a new boyfriend that nobody like him and she got him around my kids and and my ex partner made up a plan for agreement to stick with I stuck with the agreements she didn't it says on the agreements that she will never introduce another man to the boys and less she is serious in a relationship and I will have to meet them first I said I don't want to meet none of her boyfriend because I won't like it and but my ex does what ever she like because it all a one way road with my ex i can't see my son because she showing off because every time i go to her house she call the police on me or get someone to send me saying if i go down there i will go prison all because i don't here new james around my boy or trying to play step roll to my son. My said to me that we have the rights but i dont have the right to see my son my also said i can't see my son son unit i got to mediation when i did go to mediation she i want to go court so I'm going to court on the 25th on june hopefully i will see my boy.
Jerome - 17-May-20 @ 5:32 PM
My partner has a child with an ex 5 year only little boy we have him every weekend ( supposed to) me and my partner are now expecting our first child together. She has threatened me and the baby and wont allow us to see his son through being spiteful it has been going on for years and seeing my partner so broke when things dont go her way it's always your not seeing your son! We just want our weekends back and for him to know his little brother. Uploading things on how lovely she is and being fake when she has videos of her little boy swearing and her laughing he sleeps on the sofa and not the bed his dad brought him staying up past midnight and waking up at 1 in the afternoon going on sleep overs when on lock down.. all we want is our weekends back so we get to spend time with him on days out and making memories.
Amy - 15-May-20 @ 3:00 PM
All this business with solicitors, intermediates and courts cost money. I have none... because of the C19. Is there any financial help.
HelpIfICan - 14-May-20 @ 10:53 AM
@dannyo.last thing my split was (not amicable) we got on like (Israel and Palestine and it will alwaysbe that way to my death bed )I won’t change or ever bow to that women stuff that I look down on this women in all honesty she was a bit of fun in my early 20s like A toy once you had enough of the new toy you throw it away .get another new toy to play with a younger and prettier toy there are so many toys in the world don’t limit yourself to a old used up second hand toy I like young fresh toys .
Chris - 28-Apr-20 @ 10:03 PM
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