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Divorce & Family Law - Children

 

Do dads only get weekend access?

Lucy Phipps
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We are often approached by fathers who worry that after a divorce they will only get weekend access to their children. The reality is that this type of arrangement is now very rare. The approach of the Family Court is to involve both parents in their...

'No fault' divorce rules set to end the 'blame game'

Lucy Phipps
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The introduction of ‘no fault’ divorce in April 2022 is perhaps the biggest shake-up in divorce law for decades. The aim is end the “blame game” and reduce acrimony and hostility which can be made worse under the old regime. Now,...

Do I need consent from my ex-partner to take my children on holiday?

Rebecca Laffan
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Parents are often unsure whether they need consent from their ex to take their children on holiday. We provide a handy guide from the perspective of Family Law in England and Wales. Holidays Abroad The first thing to consider is who has parental...

Separated parents and negotiating Father's Day arrangements

Lucy Phipps
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Many separated families spend time discussing and resolving the best arrangements for their children to move between their homes, and ‘special days’ can often be the hardest.  For Father’s Day, we will generally advise our clients to...

Will the Court order my child to get the Covid vaccine?

Rebecca Laffan
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When parents are unable to come to an agreement regarding whether their child should be vaccinated, they will need to seek an order from the Family Court. The Family Court will determine whether the child should receive the vaccine by focusing on what is in...

Covid-19 restrictions and child contact

Emma Walker
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Although there is the prospect of current Covid-19 restrictions easing on a stage-by-stage basis, it can be difficult for separated parents to understand what is permitted in relation to child contact arrangements; so we thought it would...

What happens if my child refuses to go to Contact?

Rebecca Laffan
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The paramount consideration of the court in determining arrangements for children is ‘what is in the best interests of the child?’ The court will apply, as previously explained in earlier blogs, the welfare checklist which does include taking...

Christmas child arrangements for separated parents

Amy Foweather
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Whilst 2020 has been difficult for everybody, it has been particularly difficult for separated parents trying to accommodate child arrangements, whether they have a court order, or not. This has not been helped by conflicting government guidance and...

Will my ex pay my legal costs in children proceedings?

Rebecca Laffan
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In court proceedings concerning children the general rule is that each party will pay for their own legal costs. The reason for this is that the Court does not view these cases as having a ‘winner’ or ‘loser’. Rather, the court makes...

Can I take my child on holiday if the other parent objects?

Lucy Phipps
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This question has always existed but has been exacerbated by the travel restrictions and anxiety brought on by Covid-19. The law is actually very straightforward.  If you have a residence or ‘lives with’ Court Order than you can usually...

Co-Parenting during Covid-19

Lucy Phipps
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The government has confirmed that arrangements for children to move between the households of separated families is permitted. Parents are being asked to carry out a sensible assessment of the circumstances before deciding what the arrangements should be....

Child Arrangements and Covid -19 - Question and Answers

Amy Foweather
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Q. Since the lock down effective 23.3.2020, can children still leave one house to see the other parent? A. Whilst advice is changing quickly, the current advice is that children can still move between houses and should still see both parents, where it...

Covid-19 and Child Arrangements

Amy Foweather
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As a consequence of so many anticipated changes in the coming weeks and months, it is important for parents to consider the impact, if any, on Child Arrangements Orders and any informal arrangements.  This is not only due to the likely extended...

Consent of the other parent required to relocate within the UK

Amy Foweather
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When considering relocating your children, both an internal relocation (within England and Wales) and external relocation (from England and Wales to other parts of the UK) requires the consent of the other party. Internal relocation cases, just like...

Raising a child in more than one country can trigger unforeseen legal issues for Royals and non-Royals alike

Lucy Phipps
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Raising a child in more than one country can trigger tricky legal issues, for both Royals and non-Royals, in the unhappy event of a future separation or divorce. As we all know, Meghan and Harry are currently finalising their personal and official...

Enforcement Orders - Child Arrangement Orders

Amy Foweather
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A Child Arrangements Order is an order made by the court stating where children will live and how and when they will spend time with each parent. If the terms of the Order are not being met, by one party or the other, there is...

How is child maintenance calculated?

Emma Walker
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A parent who does not live with their child may be liable to pay child maintenance to the parent with primary care for the child until the child turns 18 or ceases full time secondary education.  Child maintenance may,...

Can I adopt my stepchild?

Amy Foweather
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In some circumstances it is possible to adopt stepchildren. However, it is always advisable that you seek legal advice on the circumstances of your case and to consider if adoption is a necessary and most favourable option for your family. It is sometimes...

Do I need permission to take my child abroad?

Lucy Phipps
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Particularly if you are separated or divorced, in order to take your child abroad, you will need written permission from everyone with parental responsibility. The child’s mother automatically has parental responsibility, but this is not always the...

The right way to change a Child Arrangement Order

Amy Foweather
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A Child Arrangement Order is a court order regulating arrangements concerning with whom a child should live, spend time or otherwise have contact. We often come across situations where the children themselves voice that they no longer wish to visit...

Fathers' rights in light of the convicted Rotherham rapist story

Lucy Phipps
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You will all be aware of the recent headlines regarding the ‘Rotherham Rapist’ and the steps taken by Rotherham Council when they contacted Mr Hussain about care proceedings regarding the son he fathered through the rape of his mother. What...

Choice of school

Lucy Phipps
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In many cases, the choice of school is straightforward but what happens when parents who are divorced can’t agree on a choice of school? Where parents both have parental responsibility for their child, major decisions relating to the child,...

Parental Alienation

Lucy Phipps
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For separated parents there can often be a worry that as a result of living apart from your child , your parent-child relationship may start to suffer. In extreme cases, children can become estranged from one parent as a consequence of the other...

Acquiring legal parental responsibility

Lucy Phipps
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Becoming a parent is momentous and, with all the life changes, brings the rights and responsibilities every parent needs to care for their child properly. The legal term for these rights and duties is 'parental responsibility'. This term is...

Summer holiday arrangements

Lucy Phipps
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It is around this time of year that families start to plan their summer holidays but, if you are separated from the mother or father of your children, what do you need to do legally before you book your holidays? If you have a Residence Order or a Child...

Real Life Dramas

Emma Walker
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Some of you reading this may have watched Eastenders recently, whereby there was a delay in Martin returning the children to Stacey following contact.  The programme showed Stacey calling at Martin’s home address with the Police to collect the...

The Grandparent Trap

Lucy Phipps
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There is no automatic right in England & Wales for grandparents to see their grandchildren or to have any involvement in their upbringing. However, the Courts are beginning to recognise the often invaluable role that grandparents can play both in...

The Importance of Contact Centres

Lucy Phipps
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Recent news that another Supported Child Contact Centre is closing its doors should give us all cause for concern. When parents separate, the relationships between adults can be difficult and the months following a separation can be enormously painful....