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Experienced Child Contact & Custody Lawyers

Our divorce and Family Lawyers are based in Edinburgh and Glasgow but cover the whole of Scotland. There are a various child focused issues which may require to be resolved following a separation such as contact and residence (previously referred to as custody and access). Whatever the issue, our specialist accredited Family Lawyers can assist you in navigating a clear way forward.

  • We are an award winning family law team recognized as leaders in the field of family law.
  • Our team includes accredited as specialists in the field of family law.
  • Three dual qualified lawyers can advise on Scottish and English divorce.
  • With qualified mediators and collaborative lawyers in our team we can offer alternative solutions to expensive and stressful court action.

Our child contact and custody lawyers are here to support and guide you through difficult times.

Child Contact & Custody 
Frequently Asked Questions

What amount of contact should my child have with their other parent?

The type of contact arrangement and routine that you arrange with your child’s other parent can change over time and will vary from family to family, depending on your individual circumstances and your child’s best interests.

What if we can’t agree the specific details of contact?

If you are unable to decide the specific time a child spends with each parent by agreement, the options available to you include mediation, negotiation via a solicitor or as a last resort you could decide to raise a court action.

My former partner wants to relocate to a different country with my child. What can I do?

If a parent wants to move to another country within the UK or overseas, consent from the other parent is required failing which they must ask the court to make a specific issue order. The child’s best interest will be the paramount consideration for the court.

What are parental rights and responsibilities?

At birth a mother automatically has such rights as does the father if he is married to the mother. Unmarried fathers also have these rights automatically so long as the child was born after 4th May 2006 (which is when the Family Law (Scotland) Act 2006 came into force) and they are named as father on the child’s birth certificate. Such rights allow you to care for and be involved in the life of the child albeit that these rights are not absolute and must be considered against a background of the child’s best interests. If you do not have these rights, you can acquire them either by asking the mother of the child to enter into a parental rights and responsibilities agreement or by asking the court to grant such rights.

  • Anonymous
  • Family Law

“I am tremendously grateful to you for all that you have done to get me to this point – both over the long period during which the Agreement was negotiated and at various difficult moments since then.  It is a huge relief to finally have this resolved, and your perspective and expertise have been absolutely indispensable.”

  • Pauline
  • Family Law

“I wanted to thank you for encouraging a tasteful and diplomatic separation. It’s made a huge difference to an already difficult time.”

  • Lynn
  • Family Law

“I just wanted to thank you for all that you have done to support Andrew and ourselves. Finally, we have the right outcome and the boys will have a more secure long term future.”

  • Neil Walls
  • Family Law & Residential Conveyancing

“Gilson helped me understand the best way of getting these three pieces of work done. Very approachable and friendly staff and was very flexible and understanding of my needs as a client. Were very patient with me when I was struggling to understand the legal jargon. Would confidently use Gilson Gray’s services again.”


  • Anonymous
  • Family Law

“I have always found Denise Laverty to be an exceptional lawyer… on the basis of her professional legal excellence.”

  • Family Law Testimonial

Firstly I want to say a heartfelt thank you for your support over the last few weeks. I’m aware that your first duty is to the court, but I could not have done what I needed to do recently without your calm and authoritative counsel. You gave me the freedom to make my own decisions. I’m also aware that you and your team worked extremely hard to prepare me for court at very short notice.

  • Family Law Testimonial

Denise has consistently provided well balanced expert advice, throughout a long drawn out divorce and custody case. Denise’s in depth knowledge and experience of both Scottish and English Divorce law, has guided me through a very difficult period in my life. Her reasoned approach, often tempering my naturally emotional reaction to events, was always well timed and well placed, hindsight proving her judgement correct on all occasions.

Family Law Team

Phillipa Cunniff

Philippa Cunniff

Partner, Head of Family Law

Sally Nash

Sally Nash

Partner, Family Law