Children are particularly vulnerable to the impact of a relationship breakdown. It is often difficult to agree on the best way forward with your partner, and we are sensitive to these issues.
Our team have many years of experience in helping parents to resolve their disputes while looking after the best interests of their children. This includes how the care of the child is shared or specific issues relating to their upbringing.
We offer expert advice to help you reach a solution that is best for the child and for you as a family. We are committed to exploring the most appropriate options available to our clients and their family, including arbitration, early neutral evaluations and mediation. Where appropriate, we seek input from experts such as child and family therapists, counsellors, mediators and child psychologists.
Whilst we encourage parents to resolve matters without the need for court, when this is not possible, we approach litigation with a firm but constructive approach with the awareness that parenting relationships continue for many years after.
Living arrangements for children are often the hardest issues facing separating parents.
If you and your partner cannot agree who your children should live with, whether their care should be shared or how much time they spend with each of you, then an application can be made to the court to determine this.
We also regularly act in cases over specific issues relating to a child’s upbringing such as where they go to school, disputes over medical treatment or issues over religious upbringing.
Situations often arise where a parent may want to relocate with a child abroad (whether that be for a new opportunity or returning to a home country). In order to permanently take a child out of England and Wales you need permission from everyone who has parental responsibility for the child.
If the other parent’s agreement cannot be obtained, then a court application will need to be made to obtain an order granting permission to go. These are known as “leave to remove” cases and the overriding concern for the court will be whether the move is in the best interests of the child, including the impact on the relationship with the other parent left behind.
We recognised that these type of cases, whether pursing a relocation or opposing one, can be incredibly emotive and stressful. Opting for the right strategy from the outset can have a significant impact on the prospects of success of such an application. Therefore, strategic advice is recommended as early as possible.
We offer Family Mediation for parents who wish to explore issues together and seek an outcome they both believe is right for their children. A Mediator encourages open communication and a willingness to negotiate so both parties can work towards a settlement.
A number of our family law solicitors are trained in Collaborative Law. Through this process, both parties and their solicitors commit to reaching solutions by agreement rather than through the courts. Collaborative Law differs from Mediation as each party has a solicitor to guide and advise them throughout the process.