Family Law Arrangements for Children

Arrangements for Children

Whatever your issue is relating to your child we can help. We provide expert legal advice and aim to resolve your issue as quickly and amicably as possible.

When a relationship ends and you have children together, it’s not always possible to agree what will happen with them such as which parent they will live with, how much time they should spend with the other parent or making decisions about specific things such as which school your child should attend.

We will always try and resolve matters without the need for court proceedings but this is not always possible and sometimes a court order is required. There are different types of orders available relating to children, which include:

  • child arrangement order
  • specific issue order
  • prohibited steps order

Child arrangement orders

Child arrangement orders (previously known as Contact and Residence Orders) set out the arrangements for the child including which parent they live with and when, how often and for how long the child spends time with the other parent. The order can also include any changes to the usual child arrangements for special occasions such as Christmas and birthdays.

The court will only make an order if they feel it’s in the child’s best interests to do so and it is assumed that it is in the child’s best interest for both parents to be involved in their lives, unless there is evidence to suggest this is not the case. The court will look at the current arrangements for the child (sometimes referred to as the ‘status quo’) and decide whether or not these need to be amended.

It is important you seek legal advice as soon as the arrangements are not agreed, particularly if you are being prevented from spending time with your child, as the proceedings can take some time for issues to be resolved.

Specific issue orders

A Specific Issue Order can be applied for if there is a disagreement about any matter related to exercising your parental responsibility. This can include:

  • which school your child should go to
  • whether you child should receive medical treatment
  • which religion your child should follow, if any
  • whether you can take your child to live abroad

This application can run alongside an application for a child arrangements order if necessary and the court can decide on all issues relating to your child at the same time.

If you want to relocate with your child outside of England or Wales, it is important that you do not make the move without the other parent’s consent or an order from the court as you would be committing a criminal offence. This is a complex matter with extra factors that the Court must consider so it is important that you seek legal advance well in advance of your planned move.

Prohibited Steps Orders

A Prohibited Steps Order is an order preventing a parent from taking a particular action relating to your child. This could include preventing them from removing the child from your care or from the court’s jurisdiction, preventing them from changing the child’s school or name or preventing medical treatment.

Most prohibited steps orders are needed to prevent something that is going to happen imminently and so you may need to make an urgent application to the court.

Whatever your issue is relating to your child we can help. We provide expert legal advice and aim to resolve your issue as quickly and amicably as possible. We can help with reaching an agreement directly with the other parent, referring you to mediation or representing you throughout court proceedings. All work will be charged at our hourly rate of £190 plus VAT.

Get in touch with our team today

01706 644187


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