The breakdown of a marriage be it separation or divorce can be hard for children as much as for parents. At Brendan Fleming Solicitors we have forged a stellar reputation for our knowledge and action in the area of children’s proceedings and matters relating to children and there welfare.
In family law the welfare of any implicated children must be considered first and decisions will be looked at from the point of view of your child. It is your child’s right to have an ongoing relationship with both parents. Courts will almost never get involved in making decisions for you about contact or arrangements for how your children will be cared unless you either cannot decide for yourselves or if there are child protection concerns.
You may have already decided between yourselves how the child arrangements will be made, or feel that you will easily be able to reach agreements with some good advice.
If you cannot easily reach an agreement about how your children will be cared for we will use mediation and advice to assist you on what to do.It is the inability to reach decisions that usually prompts parents to apply for the courts to make a decision. Before such applications are made, new legislation dictates that certain mediation procedures are followed.
In April 2011 the Pre-Action Protocol for Mediation Information and Assessment came into force. A Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting is done with a third party (not our firm) and we arrange for you to get this step done. It is essentially a mandatory exploration to see whether mediation is appropriate and workable for your family; the idea being that litigation might be avoided for your family where possible. Though this avenue must mandatorily be explored, it does not affect us starting your divorce process and should not act to slow anything down.
In such scenarios where you feel mediation will work, we offer mediation in a neutral and relaxed environment. Here you can meet with your ex-partner and discuss the future of your children without added stress and pressure.
If mediation is breaking down or not a good option for you then we are experts in making relevant applications to the court to govern where your children should live and what arrangements are in place for contact by the other party. These days parents are able to split the time of the children in pretty much any way which is best for the children and the parents. Contact is not limited to weekends or school holidays and some parents even choose to have children reside with both parents in a shared manner throughout each week.
Child Abduction – Relocation
Moving a child abroad does present a number of complications and in this scenario we will need to advise you separately in respect of this issue.
If you have any concerns that your partner might take your child out of the country or move location, school etc with your agreement, we can take steps to prevent actions from being taken without permission.
Should an emergency situation arise and you feel immediate protection or action is needed, we make an application to the court for action without any notice.
Should social services already be involved with your family, we are champions of children’s proceedings and can also provide solicitor services to deal with anything of this nature.