What are your parental rights?
Mothers automatically have the authority (“parental responsibility”) to make important decisions about a child’s welfare, including where the child will go to school, where the child will live and medical decisions. Fathers will have equal rights over the child’s welfare if he is on the child’s birth certificate or was married to the mother when the child was born. Either parent with parental responsibility is entitled to collect children from school or nursery.
A court order is required if either parent wants to restrict the others ability to spend time with the child or otherwise exercise their parental rights in anyway. However, there is nothing in the law that protects these rights and in order to enforce an uncooperative parent, we will need to issue proceedings in the family court.
What type of order can the family court make about children?
The court has the power to make decisions about child residence, child contact and specific issues such as medical treatment or relocation. The court can also make orders preventing a parent from relocating, taking a child abroad or collecting a child from school.
What factors will the court consider when dividing up the family assets?
If there is a jointly owned property or any savings, the court will consider a number of factors when making a decision to divide the assets. The length of the marriage and whether there are any children involved will play an important role in determining the share of each spouse.
Is there any way to make a claim over property where the marriage has not been legally recognised?
Yes. If one party can show financial contributions towards the deposit or mortgage, we can still make a civil claim to retrieve your money – even if your marriage was not legally recognised in this country.
We can also make an application to allow you to remain living in the property owned by your ex-partner, if there has been any incidents of domestic abuse and you want to have them removed.
What should I do next?
Whether you are in agreement with your ex-partner or not, about family finances or child arrangements – it is important to seek expert advice from the outset. To ensure that any agreements made are fairand will be legally enforceable should arrangements break down in future. We can advise you on the best way forward, regardless of the circumstances. Please do not hesitate to contact us for a free initial consultation.