Relationship breakdowns can be a very emotional time for the whole family. This is especially so when children are involved, and it is vital that parents come to an arrangement over childcare and contact arrangements. If an agreement cannot be reached, a child arrangements order may be put in place.
A child arrangement order is used when a dispute occurs between parents over childcare arrangements. They can help families to reach an agreement that ensures the child’s best interests are considered.
A childcare arrangement sets out:
- Where the child will reside
- When they have contact with each parent
- When and what other kinds of contact can take place until the child turns 16
Any parent or guardian can make an application of a child arrangements order including:
- Anyone who lived with the child for at least three of the last five years. The application will need to be made within three months of the child no longer living with them
Applications from those who do not fall into the above categories will also be considered. The court will look at their relationship with the child, the advantages of the order being granted and the risk of harm to the child.
The child also has a say in the order. If the child does not agree with the arrangements in the order, they are able to instruct their own solicitor to present their wishes to the court. This is dependent on the child being of an appropriate age and understanding.
If you need any assistance or support with coming to an agreement regarding your child’s care arrangements, our friendly and highly experienced childcare team can offer guidance throughout the whole process.
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