Our child arrangement lawyers can help
Our team of family solicitors always have the best interests of the children in mind and will provide you with sensible and practical advice about what can be the most emotive of issues.
When you separate or divorce, the arrangements for the children can be difficult to resolve. There may be a number of things which require consideration, such as:
• Where will the children live?
• Are you relocating with a child?
• Who will they live with and what time will they spend with the other parent?
• The appropriate financial contributions to be made for the children - read our financial claims for children page
• What school the children will go to?
• What rights do grandparents have when it comes to seeing their grandchildren?
The child law experts at Thomson Snell & Passmore will encourage and assist you in trying to resolve any issues regarding children with your partner or spouse by agreement, either through lawyers or by attending mediation. Our lawyers can also work with you and your partner on a collaborative basis to try and help you come to an agreement.
Child Arrangements Orders
If you are not able to resolve matters by agreement, we can assist you in making an application to the Court under the Children Act 1989 for various orders. The term ‘custody’ is no longer used by the court, and instead a court will be asked to make a Child Arrangements Order setting out where the children will live and spend time. We can advise you about such applications and discuss whether this is the most appropriate step to take in your case.
If an application to the Court is necessary, we can prepare or help with the necessary paperwork to make the application and act for you throughout the Court process.
Alternatively, if you receive paperwork from your partner or spouse, or from his or her lawyers, indicating that a court application has been made, we can advise you about how to respond to this paperwork and act for you in the proceedings if necessary.
We understand that these can be difficult decisions and require careful consideration. The Family team at Thomson Snell and Passmore have a wealth of experience in dealing with these issues, and will make sure your objectives and concerns are properly considered throughout the process. For further information, please contact one of the team.
Examples of child arrangement issues we have advised on:
Parents living in separate countries and relocating your children
We regularly advise clients where they or their former partners want to move to a different geographical area with the children, read our client story about securing arrangements for your children following a seperation. Relocating within England and Wales is called internal relocation. We have experience in both internal and international relocation, We acted in a reported case in which a mother was given permission to permanently move with her child to live in New Zealand, the mother’s country of birth. This application had been vigorously opposed by the father of the child. We have also acted in international relocation cases involving various jurisdictions including Scotland, Singapore, Israel, France, and Northern Ireland.
Anna Woodhoo recently acted for a parent who was defending an application to change where their children should live following allegations of parental alienation being made a few years following the breakdown of the marriage. The children were separately represented in the proceedings by a Guardian. Our client successfully defended the application and remains the primary carer for the children.
We also recently acted for a father who had been very involved in his children’s lives. The mother of the children had made an application for the children to live with her and spend limited time with him, which he opposed. With our assistance, he persuaded the court to make an order that the care of the children should be shared equally between the parents.
Grandparents obtaining guardianship
Helen Waite acted for grandparents who had taken over care of their grandchildren, in a situation where neither the mother nor the father was able to care for the children on a day to day basis. We successfully obtained a special guardianship order, giving the grandparents parental responsibility for the children. It was essential for the grandparents to have parental responsibility in the event that one or more of the children had any significant health issues and consent needed to be given for medical procedures.