Divorce and separation doesn’t just affect the two people who have decided to go their separate ways. Minimising the effect of the relationship breakdown on the children is often a separating couple’s main concern.
What you need to consider
When you divorce, you and your partner should try and reach agreement about where your children will live and how much time they are going to spend with each parent.
You may have heard the term “child custody” mentioned in the media or in discussions regarding “access arrangements” relating to children after a divorce. The terms “custody” and “access” in family law have been replaced over the years with various other terms, and all are now encompassed in the term “child arrangements”.
Reaching an agreement about child arrangements
If you can reach an agreement, the arrangements can be detailed in a “Parenting Plan” for both parents to willingly enter into. A Solicitor can help put arrangements in place for the future care of your children.
A Family Mediator can also help you agree the future arrangements for your children. This link will help you understand more about Family Mediation and how it can help you. Family mediation | Resolution
If you agree the arrangements for the care of your children, you do not need to put the agreement in writing, nor will the Court require details of your agreement.
Children can sadly become embroiled in disputes between their parents arising from a relationship breakdown. Some parents ask for help in assisting their children come to terms with the breakdown in their parents relationship. The following link can provide further information to parents who are focussed on protecting the wellbeing of their children Children and the law | Resolution
Court applications regarding your children
Wherever possible, parents should try and work together to agree future arrangements for their children, however, we appreciate that this can prove difficult in some cases.
If you are unable to reach agreement directly or with the assistance of a Solicitor or Family Mediator, you may need to apply to the Family Courts for a Child Arrangements Order.