On separation, decisions need to be made about where the children will live, how they will spend time with the other parent, and whether any specific issues need to be addressed to protect the children.
Initially it will be important to ascertain whether equal share parental responsibility is applicable in your circumstances. Spending time together with children can be in the form of daytime visits, overnight visits, and block time together. Communicating with children can be done by telephone calls, internet “webchat” utilising webcam, and letters.
If you are thinking about entering into a parenting arrangement for your children, you will need to think about:
- What are the differences between a “parenting plan” and a “consent order” and what is best for you;
- What is the current research available about the positive and negative aspects of a shared parenting arrangements for your children’s age groups;
- What is reasonably practical – e.g. do you live in close proximity to the other parent;
- What are the suggested parenting schedules for your children’s ages and the other parent’s abilities to care for the children;
- If you have concerns about the other parent’s behaviours or health, how can you best protect your children from exposure to potential harm.
You should obtain some advice about these matters and made sure you are fully informed about your children’s rights before you consider negotiations or mediation.
Our initial consultation is designed to give you clear and practical advice about whether you stand and how to ensure your children’s best interests are protected. Please call Family Law Matters on (02) 9523 3007 or complete the contact form to arrange an initial consultation with one of our Solicitors.