Child Law Advice

// dealing with legal matters that affect your children.

Our Family Law solicitors are experienced in dealing with children’s rights and making sure they are protected, through such times as relationship breakdowns. If this is the case for you, you may have lots of questions regarding:

  • What is best for your child after a divorce or separation
  • How do I make sure my child is protected
  • Arranging mediation after a family dispute
  • Getting legal aid for family law matters

Looking after your child’s interests are paramount and our family law solicitors will work with you to help resolve any family issues.

Under the Children’s Act, parents have certain parental responsibilities when it comes to their children and their upbringing. These centre on their welfare and include decisions such as:

  • Where should your child be educated
  • Choosing, registering or changing your child’s name
  • Appointing a guardian in the event of a death
  • Consenting to medical treatment
  • Accessing your child’s medical records
  • Consenting to holidays abroad or extended stays
  • Representing the child legally
  • Determining the child’s religion

These decisions are integral for a child, which mothers and married fathers automatically have the responsibility to make. However, unmarried fathers need to be registered on the birth certificate or apply for a Parental Responsibility Order from the Family Court to have a say in any of these decisions.

Being a parent is hard enough as it is but if a relationship has broken down and you are considering a divorce or separation, children through no fault of their own can get caught up in the middle. This can then cause friction when making decisions for your child, and the child may suffer as a consequence.

Our family law solicitors are here to help sort out what is best for your child and would always suggest mediation before taking any legal actions, which we can arrange on your behalf. However, if you still cannot agree or in the case of abuse, there are several Children’s Act Applications that can be made, to help with the situation.

Type Reason
Specific Issues Order If you have specific issues concerning your parental responsibilities where legal advice is needed, a specific Issues order takes the decision away from you and gives the court the responsibility of deciding what is best for your child.
Prohibited Steps Order If you need to prevent certain actions involving your child such as, taking a child out of the country or being removed from their home, a prohibited steps order can be made to the Family Court to prevent it from happening.
Child Arrangement Order A child arrangement order gives the court responsibility for deciding where you child lives and replaces the contact and residence orders.
Lives With Order The court recognises the equal importance of both parents and will issue shared care arrangements to determine the living arrangements of your child. 
Permission To Relocate If a parent wishes to relocate abroad with their child and someone else has parental responsibility they will need permission from either the other parent or the Family Court to do so.
Child Support Both parents are required to support their children after a divorce or separation and the Child Support Agency sets out how much support should be paid; applicable to children under the age of 18.
Child Maintenance  Child maintenance is the amount a parent is set to pay for a child over 18 years of age, for such things as tertiary education or help towards supporting a mental or physical disability.

If you would like any further Child Law advice, contact one of our solicitors who will be happy to talk through your options.

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