Disputes About Children
Here at Lewis Rodgers, we can assist you with obtaining the following types of orders:-
1. Parental Responsibility
This is described by law as ‘all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property’. In reality, it gives the parent the responsibility of taking or being involved in all the important decisions in the child’s life, for example, education, religion and medical care. The duties of parental responsibility will change with the age and maturity of the child. It is important to bear in mind that a child will gradually become mature enough to take decisions for him or herself.
2. Child Arrangement Order – to live with (formerly a Residence order)
A Child Arrangement Order (to live with) is an order to decide the person with whom the child is to live. It was formerly known as custody then a Residence Order.
3. Child Arrangement Order – to spend time with (formerly a Contact Order)
A Child Arrangement Order (to spend time with) is an order requiring the person with whom the child lives or is to live to allow the child to visit or stay with the person named in the order, or for that person and the child to have some other form of contact with each other. A Child Arrangement Order (to spend time with) can authorise physical contact but can also cover contact by letter or by telephone. The amount of contact can either be specified by an order, e.g. to cover weekend visits or holidays, or the order could be for ‘reasonable contact’ in which case the arrangements can be made by the parents.
4. Prohibited steps order
A prohibited steps order is an order stating that a parent cannot take any specific step that is in his or her parental responsibility. This order deals with a specific problem that has arisen.
5. Specific Issue Order
A specific issue order is an order giving directions over a specific question which has arisen or which may arise in connection with any aspect of parental responsibility for a child. The court simply makes a decision on one issue over which there is disagreement, which cannot be resolved.
It has been a proven fact that arrangements in respect of children work best when both parents or parties are in agreement. The first step should always try to find an agreement, which both parties are happy with. This may involve an element of compromise on both sides. The Court now require you to attend Mediation before issuing proceedings unless there is a reason why mediation would not be appropriate (eg domestic abuse or it is an urgent matter). We will advise you whether you should attend mediation. If you are unable to agree matters at all then proceedings should be issued.
What if it is an emergency?
If your case is urgent then an application can be prepared and issued at court urgently. You will be able to attend court without the opponent being present and seek and interim (temporary) order of the court. Such orders are only made in exceptional circumstances.
For family cases each case is unique and we will of course advise you further in relation to your particular needs.
Specialists at Lewis Rodgers
Here at Lewis Rodgers we have a wealth of experience in this area of law. Our Anna Brunt and Jason Lewis both hold advanced accredited specialisms in this area.
Here at Lewis Rodgers we specialise in all aspects of children law. Approaching each case with real understanding and sensitivity. We can represent you in a full and robust manner, with legal representation from specialise lawyers who understand how the law may affect you and your family.