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Children Law (Private)

At Baches, we understand that the breakdown of a marriage or relationship is one of the most stressful experiences of a person’s life.

We appreciate that the most emotional part of such a breakdown is when the arrangements for the children of the relationship need to be sorted out.

Our expert Family Solicitors offer specialist advice that is practical, straightforward and clear.


Child Arrangements is essentially the phrase the law now uses to mean ‘Residence’ and ‘Contact’. Disputes as to the ‘arrangements’ for children, mean disputes as to where the children should live, and whether they should spend time with any other people.
The most common dispute is between the parents of a child, focussed on where the children should live, and whether (and to what degree) they should spend time with the other parent.


A Child Arrangements Order specifies with whom a child or children are to live, and/or the time they spend with their parent or other family member.

If you are unable to agree the arrangements for the care of your child(ren), you can make an application to the court for a child arrangements order (CAO) to regulate those arrangements as to with whom the child shall live, spend time or otherwise have contact.

Contact simply means the time that a child spends with an adult. There are several ways that contact may take place and this will depend on any issues and the circumstances in the case but can include, direct contact (either in person or via telephone or video calling), overnight contact at the parent’s home, supervised contact (possibly in a Contact Centre) and indirect contract through letters and cards.

There is a general presumption that it is in a child’s best interests to have a relationship with both parents. In rare circumstances, where the best interests of the child dictate, the court can order that there is no contact.


Parental Responsibility is defined in the Children Act 1989 as “all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property.”

It is this which allows parents to make decisions on behalf of their child, such as which school their child goes to, whether their child receives certain medical treatment, what religion their child follows, and every other important decision regarding a child.

Multiple persons can have Parental Responsibility for a child at once, and it is not always obvious who has Parental Responsibility for a child. Careful consideration of a child’s circumstances will determine who has always had Parental Responsibility for that child, who has acquired it, and who no longer has it.
Our exert Family Solicitors can give you clear advice on these issues based upon your circumstances.
If people with Parental Responsibility disagree on key issues concerning the child(ren), then it can be necessary to bring the matter before The Family Court so that the court can determine what is best for the child(ren).


Some common issues of dispute between parents are:
Whether a child should relocate (either inside the UK or abroad)

Whether a child’s name should be changed

Whether a child should receive medical treatment such as vaccinations

Whether a child should be brought up following one particular religion, or another

Whether a child should go to one school, or another

When determining these issues, the court will often make what is called a ‘Specific Issue Order’. This is an order determining what should happen in relation to one issue.


The information above is very general and non-specific.

In order for you to receive the best advice, we offer our client’s an Initial Consultation with one of our specialist Family Solicitors at a small Fixed Fee. At that consultation, one of our Solicitors will speak to you about your particular circumstances, and give you specialist advice on your situation. That advice will then be confirmed in writing afterwards.

If you would like to enquire as to a consultation, please do telephone our office.

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