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Battrick Clark Solicitors of Bristol offer all the help and legal advice you will need to make the best arrangements for your children.

Our wide experience in this area helps ensure a successful outcome.

    • We have experience in all aspects of private children law
    • We can help you resolve issues relating to whom a child or children should live with, and contact arrangements

Child law – residence and contact

We all hope that if relations between parents break down we would be able to make arrangements for the children without the recourse to solicitors or the courts. Unfortunately, this isn’t always possible.

We deal with all aspects of private children law, whether it is ensuring that the children will remain living with you or being certain of arrangements for seeing your children on a regular basis. We also deal with specific issues such as a child’s name, education, religious upbringing and whether the parent with care of the child is permitted to move out of the area or even to another country.

When a child is born today, provided the father is present at the registration of the birth and is named on the birth certificate, then he has parental responsibility (PR) for his child. Mothers have parental responsibility automatically. PR confers rights and responsibilities including the right to influence a child’s place of residence, education and ability to give consent to medical treatment for the child.

If a father doesn’t have PR, this can be conferred by agreement of the mother and drawn up in a document that is sworn by both parents and registered at the Principal Registry in London.

If not agreed, then we would make an application to the court on your behalf. Provided that you have demonstrated the necessary commitment to your child then the court usually has no difficulty granting PR.

Questions and answers

What can I do to see my children/grandchildren etc or retain them living with me?
This can be achieved in one of three ways; by mutual agreement; by independent mediation or by use of a Court application or order.

What rights do I have regarding childcare?

Mothers automatically have Parental Responsibility unless removed by the Court. Fathers (if named on the birth certificate – since December 2003) have Parental Responsibility rights. Alternatively, Parental Rights can be agreed or can be obtained by a Court order.

Who has to contribute to the child’s expenses and well being?
Both parents have to contribute. The non-resident parent can make agreed voluntary contributions or arrange to contribute via a Child Maintenance Service Assessment.

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