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Child Custody Rights

By: Anna Martin - Updated: 12 Feb 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Child Custody Residency Disputes Courts

In the UK child custody law determines who should be responsible for the care and charge of a child, after divorce or separation. The term custody is now more commonly referred to as residency - indicating where the children's main residence is, following a parental break up.

In the many cases, parents preference is for joint custody (or residency), which enables the child to spend an equal amount of time with each parent. This option also allows both parents to participate in any decision making which may affect the child. However, if parents are unable to decide amicably on what living arrangement is best for their child, the courts will decide on their behalf.

Parent Vs Parent

Most bitter disputes between married couples end up in the family courts. Whilst the separation and ensuing bitterness will undoubtedly affect the children it's important to remember that:
  • Most child residency court cases end amicably with either agreed residency or joint residency as the outcome
  • Access and maintenance payments from the non resident parent are also taken into consideration
  • In disputed cases each parent is individually assessed before a decision on which parent is given custody of the child, or children, is made

The best interests of the child is the general standard at the heart of all residency cases.

Joint Residency

Joint residency is considered to be the preferred solution as being in the best interests of most children.

BUT...there are no laws or 'rights' that state that a child should live specifically with either the mother or father.

Assuming you both have parental responsibility it is up to you to negotiate residency on the basis of what is best for the children. Many couples neglect to consider this fact and err on the side of what they themselves would prefer (or what suits them).

If you cannot come to an agreement, you should try mediation first. If that is unsuccessful, the courts will become involved and will issue a court order based on what it sees as appropriate.

Joint Residency Reflect Modern Society

The choice of joint residency, reflects the changes in society and takes into consideration work that mothers do outside of the home and a more hands-on approach of child care by fathers. By allowing both parents to have an equal share in the physical care of their child, or children, all legal rights connected to responsibilities and obligations to children are divided.

Custody Disputes

Most custody disputes involve the child’s mother and father. However, in some cases a third party – a grandparent, for instance – may seek custody at the time of a parent’s death or incapacity. If a couple has never married - making provisions for the care of their child may also develop into a dispute. Generally though a court will accept that a parent is in the best position to maintain the welfare of their child.

Unusual Circumstances

In some rare circumstances one parent may be permanently excluded from having any access to their child. However, the court has the right to change the decision at any point in time, should the parent’s circumstances change. The parent is able to re-apply for access at any time, and once an application is made the court may reconsider arrangements after examining evidence.

The Court Decides

The courts will generally accept custody arrangements that parents submit as part of their separation agreement. To ensure these arrangements serve the child’s interests the courts will review the plan. The role that grandparents, step-parents and other influential adults play in the child’s life may also be taken into consideration by the courts.

Changing Or Regaining Custody

Changing a child’s residency arrangements is possible. In order to support the change, substantial evidence of the stability the child will need to be submitted. There are many other factors to consider, which may include relocation of a parent, stability of employment, integration of the child into the new environment etc.

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Hi I have a 7 year old daughter whom stays with her dad half the wk then the other half with me,it's been like this since we split 5 years ago, her dad has since got a new partner and have been together for little over 2 years, Iv had nothing but complaints from my daughter about how his partner treats her and how she never gets to see her dad as he's always out, recently Iv been made aware he is due to attend court for attacking someone in a night out and the citing had to have his face pinned! My daughter always says every time she's back with me and my husband to which we now have a daughter together also that she wants to stay with us and not her dad! They have recently had a baby and my daughter is feeling very upset and emotional lately! I'd love to have my daughter full and always have,I thought shared residency would be best for her but I try wkly want her to be with me full time and stop her upset, how would I stand if I took it to court and applied for full residency??
Gummy - 12-Feb-16 @ 10:01 PM
rachel - Your Question:
Hi, I have been divorced now for the last 2 years and separated for 3 and half. Me and my ex have a 4year old. We have always had a fortnightly routine where for example week one my ex will have him for two nights a week and then on week two my ex will have him three nights a week. Just recently my ex has started writing formal letters demanding to change the routine to better suit himself, I am now 8months pregnant and myself and my child now live with my new partner which is why this has now started to happen. I have already seen a solicitor who advised to tell my ex to take the matter to court as they will not change any routine unless it in the best interest of the child. However I am worried that this may not be the case and he may get his way, which will obviously devastate myself and up route my sons whole routine which has been in place since he was 1 and half. He has no real reason to want these changes its simply because he's now decided he wants as he calls it full joint custody. Please could you advise as to whether this would actually get taken seriously if it went to court as I don't know much about the laws surrounding it. Thanks

Our Response:
If your ex can give good reason why he wishes for the routine to be changed, then he may have a case to argue i.e changes in work commitments etc, but this is usually to change specific days. Of course, the court would have to consider his application, but there is no guarantee he would be awarded shared-care if you disagreed. Unfortunately, it is impossible to predict how a court may decide - but your solicitor has given you sound advice. Another option would be to consider Mediation, however, Mediation is best considered if you wish to resolve the situation by way of compromise.
ChildSupportLaws - 12-Feb-16 @ 2:23 PM
maz - Your Question:
My son is waiting to hear if his child can be placed with him. It was all going well until lately Can social services stop a child from being placed with a parent if there partener suffers with low anxiety problems They are in a stable relationship and have a second child of 8 months His partner is commited to the child being placed with them She is a great mum to her baby so I see no problem

Our Response:
I'm afraid I cannot answer this question if it is already in the hands of the Social Services. However, in general terms I do not imagine this would be more than a minor issue.
ChildSupportLaws - 12-Feb-16 @ 9:49 AM
Hi, I have been divorced now for the last 2 years and separated for 3 and half... Me and my ex have a 4year old. We have always had a fortnightly routine where for example week one my ex will have him for two nights a week and then on week two my ex will have him three nights a week. Just recently my ex has started writing formal letters demanding to change the routine to better suit himself, I am now 8months pregnant and myself and my child now live with my new partner which is why this has now started to happen. I have already seen a solicitor who advised to tell my ex to take the matter to court as they will not change any routine unless it in the best interest of the child. However I am worried that this may not be the case and he may get his way, which will obviously devastate myself and up route my sons whole routine which has been in place since he was 1 and half. He has no real reason to want these changes its simply because he's now decided he wants as he calls it full joint custody. Please could you advise as to whether this would actually get taken seriously if it went to court as I don't know much about the laws surrounding it. Thanks
rachel - 12-Feb-16 @ 12:50 AM
Mick - Your Question:
Hi there. I split from my partner a few weeks ago. We weren't married but his name is on the birth certificate. The reason we split was because he was not interested in his daughter. She is 8 months old. I have been looking after and paying for my daughter with the little money I recieved on benefits. He has a full time job and never once gave me a pennie towards his daughter. He would only see her for an hour or most when he could be bothered to come visit her. He knows nothing about her, he can't even feed her. Now his parents are trying to take me to court to get partial custody of my daughter with his help. His parents have never liked me and since finding out I was pregnant they have been trying ways to get my daughter off me, as his mother for some reason wants my daughter. My daughter doesn't know them or him. He gets to see his daughter on his days off and his parents get to see her once a week. I really need help in understanding what would their chances be of getting my daughter? I couldn't cope if I would have to hand her over. It would break her wee heart. I'm terrified that they will finally succeed in getting her. Please help. Thank you

Our Response:
It is very rare that the courts will take a child from the resident-parent and hand her over to the non-resident parent unless absolutely necessary. The court objective is to ensure your child has a stable upbringing with the least amount of change and distress as possible. If your ex is not paying towards your child, then you can claim via the CMS here. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 11-Feb-16 @ 2:50 PM
my son is waiting to hear if his child can be placed with him. It was all going well until lately Can social services stop a child from being placed with a parent if there partener suffers with low anxiety problems They are in a stable relationship and have a second child of 8 months His partner is commited to the child being placed with them She is a great mum to her baby so I see no problem
maz - 11-Feb-16 @ 10:38 AM
morden society - Your Question:
Hi im having the mis fortune of having to go though a divorce. There is child of 16 months who is caught up in the middle. the ex just up and left and said she was spending a couple of weeks at her mums then arrived the divorce papers. v tried to be reasonable about the divorce and talking about child custody and maintenance. But given the way she is acting looks like its going to court. She as also asked that I pay for part of her legal fees which I don't think is on esp since she decided to employ someone who charges in excess of £400 an hour. she has been trying to make up other stores about how she was the sole carer when she clearly wasn't. She has also started working part time saying she needs to look after the little guy. Now I work full time but I have an employer who is very supportive with regards to hours and arrangements. she just been casual labour for a long period of time and we were married less then 5 years. Now can I go for residency as a father and will I get it? My son is in no way attached to her and more to me even though I only currently get to see him twice a month which is ringing alarm bells telling me there is an issue with here. I have always thought she has undiagnosed mental issues but not sure how to prove this. Any advice from anyone about getting residency, making sure she pays her own way (she filed for divorce and I agreed to get rid of her quicker), and also on how I can prove she is not a fit mother

Our Response:
Proving your ex is not a 'fit' mother can only be proved through fact and not supposition. Otherwise this can lead to false accusations, which would be treading on dangerous ground. With regards to child custody, the court will consider a number of issues including the child’s emotional, educational and physical needs, the likely effect on any change in the child’s life, the capability of each parent or other person of meeting the child’s needs etc. However, it is rare that the courts will take a child from one parent and hand it over to another unless absolutely necessary. I cannot advise regarding the financial terms of your divorce, except to say you may wish to consider suggesting Mediation to your ex as a way of resolving your financial, divorce and childcare arrangements as this is a lot less expensive than taking it to court.
ChildSupportLaws - 10-Feb-16 @ 11:45 AM
Hi im having the mis fortune of having to go though a divorce. There is child of 16 months who is caught up in the middle. the ex just up and left and said she was spending a couple of weeks at her mums then arrived the divorce papers. v tried to be reasonable about the divorce and talking about child custody and maintenance. But given the way she is acting looks like its going to court. She as also asked that I pay for part of her legal fees which I don't think is on esp since she decided to employ someone who charges in excess of £400 an hour. she has been trying to make up other stores about how she was the sole carer when she clearly wasn't. She has also started working part time saying she needs to look after the little guy. Now I work full time but I have an employer who is very supportive with regards to hours and arrangements. she just been casual labour for a long period of time and we were married less then 5 years. Now can I go for residency as a father and will I get it?. My son is in no way attached to her and more to me even though I only currently get to see him twice a month which is ringing alarm bells telling me there is an issue with here. I have always thought she has undiagnosed mental issues but not sure how to prove this. Any advice from anyone about getting residency, making sure she pays her own way (she filed for divorce and I agreed to get ridof her quicker), and also on how I can prove she is not a fit mother
morden society - 9-Feb-16 @ 5:46 PM
Zippy- Your Question:
Hello I'm a separated Dad, I have a daughter, she's 7 I have been separated from her Mother for almost 6 years I see her every weekend and have a court order allowing me to see her every Sunday but generally her mother allows me to see her all weekend as it suits her, Since my daughter started at primary school I've been concerned about her general upkeep, I know that her mother cares for her but as far as her routine, upkeep sleep pattern and diet, it shall we say inadequate, My daughters health and her schooling is suffering badly, I've raised it with her mother repeatedly also the school that my daughter attends has, we've had various meetings down at the school and I've delicately approached the matter my self with her mother, to which there is no change! Her absence is worse than ever and she is falling behind. Reluctantly both me and my daughters school have contacted social services and they have appointed a social worker, But having just had my daughter today, My daughter told me she has had yet another week of school!! It's clear that nothing is going to change!! I am now considering applying for custody of her, as I feel I will be able to bring her up better and with the structure and routine she needs, I am on her birth certificate and I have my own house with her own room, with several good schools in close proximity, I have a close family living near to me and can easily afford to work part time to accomodate my daughters needs, How do I apply to the courts with out setting of into to shark pit of family solicitors as I have absolutely no faith in the numerous solicitors I have booked appointments with!! This is a clear appeal for help to bring my daughter up in a better environment, I don't want spin doctors to manipulate my situation in order to make money

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. Have you thought of asking your ex directly whether you could take more care of your daughter in order to make sure she attends school etc? This would perhaps be the best idea in the first instance. If your ex refuses then you could suggest she attends Mediation in order to try and resolve the matter. If your ex refuses Mediation or the agreement is not what you wish for, your next option would be court (if you apply to any court it will expect that you have at least considered mediation before it will allow you to apply). If you don't want to pay the hefty legal bills of a court case, or wish to put your own points across, then you can self-litigate, please see link here. Also, the Bar Council has a very informative guide here. Many fathers are taking this route with a good amount of success. You have a good case for court, given that the school and social workers have been involved and you are also very much involved in your child's life. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 8-Feb-16 @ 2:01 PM
?? - Your Question:
Hi, I'm a situation where I was in a violent volitile relationship, my ex is trying to get full custody of my 7 month son. He has been to social and he has taken him off me through telling lies, as a result of this I'm not aloud in or near my home or my son. What are the chances that he will get full custody as I deeply believe that my son belongs with me. Can anyone help me with any form of advice, It would be greatly appreciated. Thank you

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. I'm afraid we cannot predict what decision the court may make as the decision will be based upon the circumstances surrounding your case and the evidence collated, not just from your ex (as it wont be based upon his word alone), but other people involved also, including friends, family, social workers medical professionals etc.
ChildSupportLaws - 8-Feb-16 @ 9:51 AM
Hello I'm a separated Dad, I have a daughter, she's 7 I have been separated from her Mother for almost 6 years I see her every weekend and have a court order allowing me to see her every Sunday but generally her mother allows me to see her all weekend as it suits her, Since my daughter started at primary school I've been concerned about her general upkeep, I know that her mother cares for her but as far as her routine, upkeep sleep pattern and diet, it shall we say inadequate, My daughters health and her schooling is suffering badly, I've raised it with her mother repeatedly also the school that my daughter attends has, we've had various meetings down at the school and I've delicately approached the matter my self with her mother, to which there is no change! Her absence is worse than ever and she is falling behind. Reluctantly both me and my daughters school have contacted social services and they have appointed a social worker, But having just had my daughter today, My daughter told me she has had yet another week of school!! It's clear that nothing is going to change!! I am now considering applying for custody of her, as I feel I will be able to bring her up better and with the structure and routine she needs, I am on her birth certificate and I have my own house with her own room, with several good schools in close proximity, I have a close family living near to me and can easily afford to work part time to accomodate my daughters needs, How do I apply to the courts with out setting of into to shark pit of family solicitors as I have absolutely no faith in the numerous solicitors I have booked appointments with!! This is a clear appeal for help to bring my daughter up in a better environment, I don't want spin doctors to manipulate my situation in order to make money
Zippy - 7-Feb-16 @ 8:52 PM
NEED HELP MY CHILDRENS FATHER AS NOT ASKED FOR KIDS IN 8 WEEKS SENT A TXTOR CALLED THEM .HAVE NEVER PLACED FOUND DOWN OR HAD HIM REMOVED FROM DOOR.HE IS NOW SAYING HE WILL GO TOO COURTWHEN I DO WANT KIDS TOO SEE HIM .JUST THINK HE NEEDS TOO BE A DAD AN NOT TAKE OUT ON KIDS WHEN WE DONT AGREE.TWICE HE AS DONE THIS IN 3 YEARS ITS UNFAIR AS KIDS LOVE HIM HE WONT ANSWER THEM OFF MY DAUGHTERS PHONE BUT CALLS ME NAMES ITS SAD.HE ALSO OWES CHILDREN 500 POUND MAINTENCE.AN MY RENT IS IN TROUBLE .HE AS 15 K SAVINGS IN HIGH INTREST ACCOUNT I HAD TOO PACK WORK IN TOO TAKE CARE OF THE KIDS WHEN HE LEFT US.
shuv - 7-Feb-16 @ 8:43 PM
Hi, I'm a situation where I was in a violent volitile relationship, my ex is trying to get full custody of my 7 month son. He has been to social and he has taken him off me through telling lies, as a result of this I'm not aloud in or near my home or my son. What are the chances that he will get full custody as I deeply believe that my son belongs with me. Can anyone help me with any form of advice, It would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
?? - 7-Feb-16 @ 12:09 AM
Hi there. I split from my partner a few weeks ago. We weren't married but his name is on the birth certificate. The reason we split was because he was not interested in his daughter. She is 8 months old. I have been looking after and paying for my daughter with the little money I recieved on benefits. He has a full time job and never once gave me a pennie towards his daughter. He would only see her for an hour or most when he could be bothered to come visit her. He knows nothing about her, he can't even feed her. Now his parents are trying to take me to court to get partial custody of my daughter with his help. His parents have never liked me and since finding out I was pregnant they have been trying ways to get my daughter off me, as his mother for some reason wants my daughter. My daughter doesn't know them or him. He gets to see his daughter on his days off and his parents get to see her once a week. I really need help in understanding what would their chances be of getting my daughter? I couldn't cope if I would have to hand her over. It would break her wee heart. I'm terrified that they will finally succeed in getting her. Please help. Thank you
Mick - 6-Feb-16 @ 9:04 PM
hi there, I need some advice in what I can do with this situation. i have a auntie who is a drug addict, who had a baby, and shes about 3 now. when she gave birth, her child was up for adoption straight away as she's a drug addict. however my family wanted to take care of her, so they put themselves up. we had the worse social woker as she was doing everything to make her not stay with us as family. so then she got adopted and went to a another family and we cant see her until shes 18. this has affected my family as we don't know how she is and who she may be with and if shes doing well. i wanted to reopen the case and get her back into our harms as soon as possible as she is our blood and its not right for her to be with other people. i don't know what to do and how to start but im going to do everything i can to get her back.
CVR - 6-Feb-16 @ 3:01 PM
I had a daughter with my ex and then she had 3 more kids with her husband who took drugs I think she was as well as she's just gone to prison for stealing her other two kids have been put in care but my daughter is with her boyfriends mum who without telling me gave parental gaidenshipcan I applyfor full custody as I'm on the birth certificate
terry - 5-Feb-16 @ 10:14 PM
Em - Your Question:
Hey there, I'm a mom of a 6 month old son, and I currently live with my mother who helps out with the costs and overall care of my son massively. My sons father is not on the birth certificate (despite being told when and where it was happening), hasn't paid a penny towards his upkeep, and has barely seem him. He is also currently homeless (living with a friend) and in an increadibly low paying job. He is throwing a bit of a hissy that I won't let him have him overnight or take him out to Birmingham City Centre (bear in mind I don't know who he's living with and he's very irresponsible), and is saying he is going to get a DNA test to prove it's his son and try and get the rights to take him out (I let him see him freely here), what could he get if he goes ahead?

Our Response:
I'm afraid this is impossible to predict. You could try to come to an agreement through Mediation first. Mediation is a voluntary process and its aim is to come to an agreement that suits you both. However, if you refuse to attend Mediation, or Mediation fails, then it would be your ex's choice whether to pursue the matter through the courts. If he takes this route then Cafcass would get involved. It’s their job to interview both parents in the case and any others who might be needed, which could mean social workers, medical professionals, or even relatives. From the interviews they conduct, the reporter will determine two things: whether there should be contact allowed, and, if so, how much. It’s a measure of how important the Cafcass recommendation is that the court will almost invariably adhere to it. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 5-Feb-16 @ 12:25 PM
Hey there, I'm a mom of a 6 month old son, and I currently live with my mother who helps out with the costs and overall care of my son massively. My sons father is not on the birth certificate(despite being told when and where it was happening), hasn't paid a penny towards his upkeep, and has barely seem him. He is also currently homeless (living with a friend) and in an increadibly low paying job. He is throwing a bit of a hissy that I won't let him have him overnight or take him out to Birmingham City Centre(bear in mind I don't know who he's living with and he's very irresponsible), and is saying he is going to get a DNA test to prove it's his son and try and get the rights to take him out (I let him see him freely here), what could he get if he goes ahead?
Em - 4-Feb-16 @ 8:41 PM
mam of two - Your Question:
Hi, I currently have sole custody of my two children, 3 and 5, although not declared by law. Their father has them on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school and overnight for me to work night shifts and he has them every other weekend. I suffer from an illness that could potentially leave me in a terminal state and under those conditions, I would hate for my children to be full time with their dad, his partner and her child. This is because they never like staying there and feel pushed out. his partner won't look after my children for even an hour if their father needs to fix the car or whatnot, although she has her own child, because she "lacks confidence". Baring in mind that she's been actively involved in the children's life for over a year. Her own child is very segregated from mine. Ideally I'd like to give my share of the custody to my mother so that they have a positive, nurturing, female role model in their lives and they can keep up the same arrangement with their father. How feasible would that option be? Thank you.

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. Protecting the future of one’s children, especially in the event that parents won’t be able to oversee their care personally, is a responsibility that every parent should take seriously. Without legal documents on file, parents take the chance that the court may award guardianship of their children to someone other than who they would themselves choose, so every parent should take the time to consider who they feel is best suited to raise their child/children. In your case you should confirm with the chosen person or people, and then seek the advice from an solicitor, who can help you to draw up the necessary paperwork. Once completed, the document should be kept in a safe location along with other important papers. I hope this helps.
ChildSupportLaws - 4-Feb-16 @ 3:08 PM
Honey - Your Question:
I am a mother of 2 a 5 years old daughter and 6 months old son been married 5 years.I have suffered physical,emotional and verbal abuse from my ex husband for many years but last year November I had to leave after he threatened to assault me I left with my son cos he won't let me go with my daughter he has been asking to see them but I don't feel comfortable leaving them with him.He is now planning to take me to court claim full custody of my daughter and also filing for domestic violence towards me he has never had time for his kids always on his video game.Can he win full custody I need my kids with me they are all I have.

Our Response:
It is unlikely a court would take a children away from the resident parent unless absolutely necessary, especially if they have an established home and school life. It is always impossble to predict how these things may unfold by the time it gets to court. If you are afraid of your ex having your sons and not returning them, then you too can apply for a residency order, which will determine where your children will live.
ChildSupportLaws - 4-Feb-16 @ 2:41 PM
Hi, I currently have sole custody of my two children, 3 and 5, although not declared by law. Their father has them on Tuesdays and Thursdays after school and overnight for me to work night shifts and he has them every other weekend. I suffer from an illness that could potentially leave me in a terminal state and under those conditions, I would hate for my children to be full time with their dad, his partner and her child. This is because they never like staying there and feel pushed out... his partner won't look after my children for even an hour if their father needs to fix the car or whatnot, although she has her own child, because she "lacks confidence". Baring in mind that she's been actively involved in the children's life for over a year. Her own child is very segregated from mine. Ideally I'd like to give my share of the custody to my mother so that they have a positive, nurturing, female role model in their lives and they can keep up the same arrangement with their father. How feasible would that option be? Thank you.
mam of two - 4-Feb-16 @ 12:13 PM
I am a mother of 2 a 5 years old daughter and 6 months old son been married 5 years. I have suffered physical,emotional and verbal abuse from my ex husband for many years but last year November I had to leave after he threatened to assault me I left with my son cos he won't let me go with my daughter he has been asking to see them but I don't feel comfortable leaving them with him. He is now planning to take me to court claim full custody of my daughter and also filing for domestic violence towards me he has never had time for his kids always on his video game. Can he win full custody I need my kids with me they are all I have.
Honey - 3-Feb-16 @ 10:55 PM
Ben - Your Question:
Hi I split with my partner 4 years ago and have never missed a payment, I have also only missed 3 weekends of having him in 4 years but recently she has had another child with another man, she now has 3 kids middle one is mine, for the last 3 months she has been struggling so I have opted to take him full time, he still sees his mother after school for 3-4 hours a day then returns to mine after work (3pm) I haven't received and money of any sort, she seems to be happy with the arrangement but think this would change if I went full custody due to the money that she gets, what are the odds of gaining full custody in a few months as long as everything stays the same and sleeps at mine 7 days a week? Thanks

Our Response:
This is always a tricky question to answer as quite often the 'money' is the placating deal in such an informal arrangement such as this. Once the possibility is aired, your ex could quickly retract this agreement, so this is something you would have to be prepared for. You don't say how old your son is, or whether you can prove he stays with you across the seven days, which may in court be your word against your ex's should you take it to court. Also, while you may be having him overnight, is it you or your ex who is providing meals, clothing etc and his financial day-to-day care? You could try tentitively mentioning to your ex that you need help financially while your son stays with you, and see what the response is. You could also suggest Mediation if you cannot agree between you. Court is always the last resort and if you do go ahead and apply for a residence order for your child, then it will cost in legal fees (unless you self-litigate). While my comments are not meant to put you off applying for residency, I am merely trying to prepare you for a few of the obstacles you may face. The courts are pushing for 50/50 shared parenting agreements, so this would stand in your favour.
ChildSupportLaws - 2-Feb-16 @ 11:02 AM
Hi I split with my partner 4 years ago and have never missed a payment, I have also only missed 3 weekends of having him in 4 years but recently she has had another child with another man, she now has 3 kids middle one is mine, for the last 3 months she has been struggling so I have opted to take him full time, he still sees his mother after school for 3-4 hours a day then returns to mine after work (3pm) I haven't received and money of any sort, she seems to be happy with the arrangement but think this would change if I went full custody due to the money that she gets, what are the odds of gaining full custody in a few months as long as everything stays the same and sleeps at mine 7 days a week? Thanks
Ben - 1-Feb-16 @ 5:00 PM
I have been divorced from my ex husband of 3 years marriage since August 2015 we have a 4 year old son. It was agreed at the time after a mediation visit that we would try joint custody one week on one week off after following advice from the solicitor. This has always been difficult for me and my son however it is becoming increasingly difficult as my son returns to me unkept and unruly and he is beginning to ask why he has to go to both houses in turn.i really would like to have full custody of my son as I too find it very difficult to not have him with me, is there anything I can do?I feel as though I have no choice but to continue shared custody. Many thanks
Burnt - 30-Jan-16 @ 7:24 PM
Whilst I know my circumstances aren't half as bad as many I would really appreciate some advice. I have a 5 year daughter, her mother and I split when she was 3.At the time her mother chose to leave the home as I own it and we weren't married, there was no dramatic affair, drink problems or drugs etc, just a relationship that didn't work and it was by mutual agreement even helping with the move and furniture etc.I thought it would be less impact to our daughter to let things settle quick and I agreed to pay the prescribed maintenance from the online calculator and I arranged to see my daughter as follows. Monday - Mum drops her off at school, Grandad collects her and does tea/pjs, at 6pm I collect her from Grandads and drive her to her mums and mum puts her to bed Tuesday - Mum drops her off at school, I then collect her and she stays with her dad until Thursday 6pm when I drop her off at her mums. Friday - Mum drops her off at school, Grandad collects her and does tea/pjs, at 6pm I collect her from Grandads and drive her to her mums and mum puts her to bed Saturday - With mum Sunday - With mum The following week is accounted for on paper as I have her 2 night per week and mum has her 5 nights per week.I'd like this to change to me having her 3 nights per week and mum 4 nights per week, my increase would come by my daughter staying at mine either the Monday night or the Thursday night. I have suggested this and her mums immediate reaction was to say 'is this so you pay me less money' and then said no! - I've said I'm happy for the money side of things to remain the same as that not the reason for seeing her, its just for ...well...seeing her more and it would also give a little more time to spend on her homework. Given that I have suggested it and got a 'NO' how can I go about making this happen with the least impact on my daughter?
Graham - 23-Jan-16 @ 4:01 PM
I am a mother. My ex has custody of my son aged 11. A court order was put in place 8 years ago when I had issues with alcohol. This has not been an issue for over 5 years now and I want my child back. He has been living with me for 6 months since his father had a heart attack and needed time to recover. In this time I've had no benefits and it's really tough. I want to know my rights now. Shouldn't I get benefits and can't my son stay with me because he is happy here. His father doesn't agree
Mich - 22-Jan-16 @ 4:44 PM
Hiya i have two children my daughter is 17months and my son is 3 months they have different fathers and my daughters father has not bothered with my daughter i want to take him to court to sort out arrangements as i shouldn't have to.do everything alone he doesn't pay child maintenance and he works full time and has his son from a previous relationship every weekend. Can you please tell me what i need to do and how do i take him to court. Thanks
sn - 22-Jan-16 @ 2:26 PM
Sr33 - Your Question:
Hello, I am after some advice. I split from my ex when my son was 12 months old. He never bothered with my son when we were together and hasnt up until now he is 4 almost 5. I take my son to see him everyother weekend amd my son is very unhappy when he has the visit and foesnt want to go. My ex is now saying that he wants to have my son over night and see more of him. I have said that I have never stopped him but I wont force my son to do anything that make him unhappy. My ex is now saying hes taking me to court for full custody of my son. Can he do this?

Our Response:
The courts will suggest mediation in order to sort out the problem before your ex can apply to the courts. The courts will not grant residency to a parent who is little involved with his child and only has limited contact.
ChildSupportLaws - 22-Jan-16 @ 11:21 AM
My brother is 12 years old and doesn't want to live with his mum or dad we share the same mum but have different dad's his dad got custody because when he n our mum split up she got with someone who drank a lot n she started to his dad treats him horribly he drinks on a weekend he threatens him and treats him differantley to his brother iv had him and my other brother ages 13 every school holiday there has been for the past 5 years his dad also leaves him in the house on his own they come to me for advice and support they stay with me all the time the problem is his dad and I don't get along any more my brother turned up today crying saying he's not going back begging me if he could come live with me what do I do??
sammy - 21-Jan-16 @ 9:40 PM
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