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Custody and Guardianship

Children’s rights to have their voices heard in Court

Despite some recent changes, there are still issues surrounding children’s rights to have their say in family law courts. I recently spoke with a 14 year old girl who was the subject of family law proceedings before the District Court. The application concerned parentage and access. Mary – not her real name – was adamant that she wanted her views to be heard by the Judge, and when I spoke …Read More

5 Reasons Unmarried Fathers Should Seek Guardianship

You Don’t automatically have it Being named on your child’s birth certificate does not give you guardianship, as some mistakenly believe. To be appointed a legal guardian you either need your partners consent, or a court order. It Gives You a Say A legal guardian is entitled to have a say and be consulted when important decisions are       being made about your child. These could include decisions on medical treatment, …Read More

Non-biological parents as guardians?

Children can often be left in limbo by the complexity of modern family relationships but their position has been hugely strengthened by a High Court decision in favour of a non-biological father. The case, which concluded at the end of last year, drew little public attention beyond legal circles but deserves closer examination because of its potential impact on future guardianship applications. The case involved two children whose mother had …Read More

Separation and Divorce: What will happen to our kids?

On a human level, what happens to your children is the most emotive element of any break-up and most parents agree that children should always be the number one priority. Their benefit and welfare should come first before deciding any matter, but let’s take a look at what’s involved in this: …. 1. What are the main issues to be decided? From a legal perspective, the main issues to be …Read More

How separated Fathers secure Custody after a Partner’s Death

Separated fathers can face a difficult and confusing situation if the mother of their child/children dies. Firstly, your child or children have lost their mother which is a traumatic time for any child. Secondly, even if you are long separated and no matter how you got on with your ex-partner, you are still coping with bereavement yourself. Thirdly, you now have to look at the future of your relationship with …Read More

My Top 5 Tips for using Social Media when going through a Divorce or family law dispute:

Most of us are so used to using social media that we sometimes forget what we post is essentially public, and that it can affect how others see us. It’s particularly important to bear this in mind if you are going through divorce, separation, access, custody or maintenance disputes in the family law courts because how your behaviour is perceived could affect key decisions. Here’s a short guide to some …Read More

The Importance of Access to Parents after Separation

It’s fairly widely accepted now that children who have healthy contact with both parents after separation or divorce do better than those in sole custody of one parent. Research shows they are better adjusted physically, psychologically, and socially with peers and at school – and shared parenting is the key to this outcome. Therefore the way in which custody and access are handled in the process of a relationship breakdown …Read More

Child Abduction and Your Rights

Child Abduction occurs when one parent seeks to resolve a dispute over children by removing them, without the consent of the other parent, or in the absence of court order, from the country.  Abduction is quite a strong word to use when dealing with these types of cases, as generally one thinks of a stranger “abducting” a child, while in fact with such cases, it is commonly the mother or …Read More