12/05/2011 23:04 BST | Updated 22/05/2015 10:12 BST

Grandparents' Rights: Access To Kids To Be Automatic Under New Proposals

Grandparents' rights Grandparents are to be given legal rights to access to their grandchildren after family breakdowns under new proposals to be set out by Whitehall.

The plans will require separating parents to draw up an agreement which will enable grandparents to keep in touch with their grandchildren. The courts will then have the power to step in if access is not forthcoming.

Figures suggest that around half of grandparents lose touch with their grandchildren after separation or divorce, with the dad's parents being the most likely to be cut off.

A Whitehall source told reporters that parents will be encouraged by mediators to work with grandparents to reach an agreement over arrangements, adding that grandparents 'will be encouraged to contribute to the arrangements and engage with their grandchildren.'

The new proposals will also call for children to have the right to choose which parent they live with after a break-up.

What do you think?
Should grandparents have an automatic right to access?
Do you have experiences of either losing touch with your former in-laws, or deciding to restrict their access to your children?

More on Parendish:

Report claims grandparents spend BILLIONS on their families