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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34905
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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Hi, Im the father of a four year old girl and a one year old

Customer Question

Hi, I'm the father of a four year old girl and a one year old boy, there mother left us all two months ago to be with another man she had been seeing. Since then I have had the kids every night and she has had them for 5 days a week either 9 till five or 12 till 5 . We was both happy with this, now she is threatening court action to take them off me. The house is mine not joint, the kids have always lived here and until now we were both good parents, I do not have to go out to work as I import and sell dogs as a business and have made and still make a lot of money from it. She does not work and never has and she has said she needs the kids to enable her to claim benefits and get her rent paid for. I know in most cases the mother will get custody but I feel in this case I am more like the mother as it was her that had the affair, her that left, it's her that will have to go to work etc . I'm just after some advice on the likely outcome as my kids are my whole life. Thank you
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
Why does she not have overnight contact at the moment?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Because we thought it best the kids remain in there own home at night so things are as normal as possible. And I do not want another man anywhere near my kids. She was happy with this as it allowed me to get a few things done in the day and it allowed her to go out drinking and things at night
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Relist: Other.
I've had no answer in 2 hours
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Why have I not had a answer ?
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
My apologies for the delay I have been off line
Since you are both clearly involved and capable parents you and your ex will need to negotiate how the care of the children will be shared between you.
I emphasise the word Shared as there is no expectation that a mother has more "rights" to care for children than the father does but equally I am afraid that the fact that she has had an affair does not mean that your ex has no right to do so.
You and she can discuss matters using Family Mediation ( and agree a parenting plan
If you cannot agree then it will be for the court to decide.
One point to note is that if what she wants is the Child Benefit rather than the children then either parent can claim it so that could be a simple fix
More details on these sites
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thanks, I know all of what you said, but my question is what is the likely outcome once it goes to court, will the kids be allowed to remain here with me or is she more likely to get residency?
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
There are no longer any Residence Orders - there are only Child Arrangement Orders.
Given all that you have said I would expect the children to stay with BOTH of you once your ex has suitable accommodation.
You will increase the chances of this happening if you are seen to be flexible and reasonable - making it clear that alternate full weekend contact plus at least one night a week will be available as soon as she has suitable accommodation.