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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 35073
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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Can the father of my son demand to have contact when he wants.

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Can the father of my son demand to have contact when he wants. Can he over ride my wishes.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
How old is the child and how long have you and your ex been separated?
What contact have you asked for - and what has he offered?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My son is 6. I have been separtated from my ex partner for over a year and we were not married. I have offered him every other weekend as I also work. He also gets to see his son in the holidays and during the week when he asks to have him. But this doesnt seem enough and can be quite demanding which make me feel uncomforable. He sees his other two children every weekend and their mother doesnt work. He says my son has to see his half brother and sister too who are 13 yrs and 14 yrs now. But my son is seeing them. He is making me feeling I cant spend any quality time with my son. I cant keep living like this. He is getting to see my son on a regular bases.

So when is he actually currently having your son - from when to when?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

He has him 10am to 7pm sat and same again on sun every other weekend and sometimes overnight depending what shift he is on. Ive lethim have my son on other days too when he has asked but he doesnt ask very well. Hes just had him for a week to take him on holiday.

So what contact is he actually asking for - given that you seem to be being very flexible as it is?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hes demanding every weekend like his other two children and if I did that my son and myself would not have any quality time and he wouldnt be able to see his friends either as I work and son is normally at school. Its just his attitude. He gets to see his son on a regular bases and he thinks im being unreasonable for not letting him have my son when he wants and expects me to drop things. My son is happy to go and see him but he does not yearn for his dad so I have no concerns there. I just wish he would just back off and allow us to live our lives as we dont live with him anymore.

Why does he not have the child overnight every other weekend?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Because hes a shift worker. He does have him overnight now and again but also my son does not sleep well, hasnt done since birth and has expressed he likes to come home, but I still encourage him to go to his dads

In general parents are expected to agree arrangements for their children them selves - using Family mediation if necessary (
Only if no agreement can be met does the court become involved.
However you have nothing to fear if your ex does go to court - alternate weekends plus some midweek contact and half of school holidays is the usual pattern and you are already offering that.
You are correct you too are entitled to spend weekends with your son and this is even more important than keeping up a relationship with siblings.
Offer to go to mediation - if your ex refuses simply confirm the current pattern and say that that is what you will work to - allowing of course for any special occasions.
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Clare and 2 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you