My former husband won't let me talk to my son What can I do?

My former husband won't let me talk to my son What can I do?
Published on: 15 June 2024

Table of contents

The relationship between parents and children is a right that both parents and children have. This problem is very common in the family process following a marital break-up, as sometimes the custodial spouse restricts the children's relationship with the other parent without cause. If you find yourself in such a situation it is best to seek advice fromn a family lawyer.

Articles 94 and 160 of the Civil Code establish the right of parents to communicate with their children. It should be noted that parent-child communication systems are considered beneficial for most families. This ensures an emotional bond with the non-custodial parent. A parent who is not with his or her child at any given time has the right to communicate with the child in a fluid way on a day-to-day basis or in any situation. As long as it is not considered a risk, insecurity or disturbance for the child, correspondence between the spouses and the child should not be lacking at any time, as it is very necessary for children to maintain extensive and regular communication with their parents on an equal footing.

Why is daily communication between parent and child important?

The absence of communication between parent and child will, over time, inevitably lead to changes in the relationship between them, as the child will change from having a parent on a daily basis to not having a parent at all.

If the child ceases to have communication with a parent, this may lead to emotional deficits that affect the child's personality development, so it is best to have good communication between parents and children. However, it is important to establish time slots for such communication.

What can we do in this situation?

Repeated blocking of communications over time without any reason will result in these relationships being judicially configured, i.e. it will be up to the judge to decide in what form and when they should communicate.

To this end, the most recommendable options are to file an application for modification of measures, to judicially enforce consent to the right to correspondence, to determine the time for the children to carry out their daily tasks such as extracurricular activities, and to respect rest periods. A flexible and fluid system of communication should be established without depriving the other parent of these regular contacts or creating unnecessary barriers for the non-custodial parent, as this will only be detrimental to the child.

If a communication mechanism has not been established in the divorce, or in the contested lawsuit the parties have not requested such a measure and the judge has not determined such a measure in the judgment, we can apply:

  • Enforcement requirement: The Spanish Civil Code provides for the possibility of requesting the same court that hears the judicial separation or divorce to force one of the parties to comply if we have a judgment on the measure and we do not comply voluntarily. This type of procedure can be initiated not only for non-compliance with telephone communications, but also for non-payment of pensions or non-compliance with visitation formalities, among others.
  • Obligation to change the remedy: When applying for a remedy of protection, the custodian is obliged not to abuse the right of custody.

Who should I inform in case of discrepancy?

If your judgment specifies a period of time during which you may call your child and this is not complied with, the competent court will be the family court of first instance in the separation or divorce proceedings and will be liable for fines if the telephone contact is not complied with.

The process starts with a request for enforcement, which will be sent to the other party within 20 working days, so that the other party can object and argue why the communication was blocked or provide evidence of compliance with the contract. Afterwards, the intervention of the psychosocial office can be requested to find out whether the child is affected by the lack of communication with one of the parents.

A judge will issue a court order setting a specific time of day to ensure that communications between parents and children can take place freely as long as the child is not engaged in an extracurricular activity or sleeping.

The standards used by the court to establish a mechanism for communication between a parent and child are found in the 29 June 2009 judgment, which include the child's age, emotional deficiencies, habits and the child's relationship with the parent.

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