When a relationship breaks down, children can often find this a very bewildering time, which can be difficult for the adults involved to deal with. Woodfines’ Family Law team can guide you through this.
Agreeing Child Arrangements
We can advise you on how to decide arrangements as to where the children should live, and the arrangements as to the time for the child(ren) to spend with the other parent (previously called contact or access).
We will aim to avoid conflict over arrangements for your children, which could adversely affect them. Woodfines will always work to achieve arrangements that you consider are in the best interests of your children, and are experienced in these sensitive matters and can provide a conciliatory and constructive approach to resolving such issues.
What If We Cannot Agree?
If you cannot agree on suitable arrangements for your child(ren), it may be necessary to ask the Court to decide the arrangements, by making an application in Children Act proceedings. We can guide you through the proceedings to achieve what is in their best interests.
The Court will decide on the basis of what the Judge thinks is best for the children. The Court’s paramount consideration is for the welfare of the child. The Court will also consider a checklist of points set out in the Children Act.
The Court can make the following Orders:
- Who the child is based with – previously called residence or custody
- The time the child spends with the other parent – previously called contact or access
- Parental responsibility – the rights and responsibilities that a parent has to make decisions in the upbringing of a child
- Specific issue – any particular issue upon which a determination is needed, for example which school a child should attend
- Prohibitive steps – this prevents a specific action happening without further Order of the Court, for example, changing the child’s school or moving abroad.