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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34888
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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I would like to know how much fathers are entitled to

Customer Question

Hello, i would like to know how much fathers are entitled to see/have their kids as I hope to soon live closer to my children. My wife and I have separated and she moved into her new home in 18 months ago, which is 100 miles away. I have been seeing them so far 75% of weekends plus holidays. We have discussed changing my seeing them every fortnight but for me to then bring them to my house instead (on the Friday evening and return them on Sunday evening). My X is saying she only wants them to travel to my house once a month and not every fortnight, which seems unreasonable and unfair to me. Is access to the kids something that is negotiated, ie if she doesn't get what she wants financially can she use access to the children as her bargaining chip to force a financial settlement in her favour? Or in law can I ink the future say I want the kids 50% of the time, once I move close to their current home?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your question

My name is Clare

I shall do my best to help you but I need some further information first

How old are the chidlren?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
5.75yrs and 4.0 yrs
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

How close will you be moving?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Very close. Maybe half a mile. Certainly less than 3 miles
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

But she says that even then she doesn't want you to have them over night on alternate weekends?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Until I move closer we discussed me having them fortnightly, to which she said she only wanted them traveling to my house (100miles away) monthly. As a separate question I would like to know my rights when I move much closer, which will be in several months time, after I have sold my house and found a new job.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.

To be clear this is about the rights of the children rather than your rights

The law says that a child is entitled to a relationship with both parents and the courts will enforce this if necessary.

This does NOT mean a 50/50 split of their time - research in Australia has proved that this is not necessarily the best option for a child - but it is unreasonable of her to refuse to allow you to bring the children to your home on alternate weeks even now.

Once you are closer then you could ask to collect them from school on a friday and return them to school on a Monday - and possibly to have them one night in the week on the same basis

Half of all school holidays is also a reasonable request.

As a starting point you need to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment meeting to se if agreement can be reached via mediation.

If not then you will have to apply to the court for an Cild Arrangement Order setting out the time that you spend with the children which can be enforced if necessary

The form you will need is a C100 and the fee is £215

I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details