The breakdown of a relationship or end of a marriage can cause huge upset and distress for children. You may be worried about how your child will cope with all the changes, how they will split their time or the care they will receive from the other parent whilst they are with them.

If you find yourself in a situation where you are worried about your children then our specialist family law solicitors can help. Our experts will listen to your concerns, advise you on the law and support you in making arrangements that work for you and your children. It is our priority to ensure that the needs of your children are met, however difficult the circumstances may be.

At Burley Geach we will always try to support you in reaching sensible and workable agreements through constructive discussions. We know that legal arrangements can be very daunting for children, whatever their age. We will consider whether mediation or collaborative law may work for you and make sure you are aware of all of your options. Sadly this is not always possible and our team of experts will not hesitate to take decisive legal action if this is necessary. Our team has lots of experience in dealing with court proceedings and obtaining legally binding orders. These can cover the living arrangements for a child, issues in respect of schooling, travelling abroad, moving out of the country and financial provision.

Different types of court orders

There are a number of different orders that a court can make in relation to children. The most common orders are;

Child Arrangement Orders

These orders replaced Residence and Contact Orders in 2014. Child Arrangement Orders set out who a child will live with and who they will spend time with. In some circumstances the court will make a Child Arrangements Order that states a child will live with both parents, although this does not necessarily mean that the time will be split equally.

Specific Issue Orders

These orders determine a very specific issue in respect of a child’s upbringing such as whether a child can go abroad, whether they are to receive medical treatment or what school they will attend.

Prohibited Steps Orders

These orders can be put in place to prevent a parent from taking a particular action or making a particular decision. For example they could prevent a child from being relocated, prevent a child from receiving particular medical treatment or prevent a child from coming into contact with a particular person.

Removal from Jurisdiction

If one parent wishes to move to live abroad with a child it may well be met by strong opposition from the other parent. The court has the power to decide whether or not permission should be granted to the parent wishing to relocate and what arrangements should be put in place to help the child maintain a good relationship with the other parent.

The considerations of the court

Whenever a court is asked to determine an issue in respect of a child it will be the child’s welfare that is the overriding consideration and the court will try to make a decision based on what it believes to be in the child’s best interests. The court will consider the “welfare checklist” and our solicitors will advise you on exactly what this involves.

At Burley Geach our wide client base and many years of experience mean that whatever the nature of your concern we will be able to help. Please do not hesitate to contact your nearest office to arrange an initial free consultation with one of our experts.