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ukfamilysolicitor
ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1494
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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I am separated from my partner. We have a 14 year old son

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I am separated from my partner. We have a 14 year old son who lives with me & is only prepared to see his father occasionally. My ex says he is going to Court to be granted more frequent access. Is a Court likely to ignore the wishes of a 14 year old who is intelligent & erudite?

Hello

Welcome to Just Answer

I am a Solicitor and will assist you.

Please may I ask:

- is your son the only child you have together?

- are there any previous court orders?

- what was the previous routine?

- how often is your 14 year old spending with his father now?

- why has your 14 year old wanted to reduce the time with his father?

kind regards

Caroline

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He is our only child No court orders
My partner was found to be having an affair in Nov 15. He left and moved in with new friend. I paid him for his share in our home. Until that time he had a normal father son relationship with his son. In Oct 16 my son started at boarding school & since that time comes home only one weekend per term & holidays. My partner contributes only the minimum salary related legal monthly contribution to our sons upkeep. Our son has spent only an occasional day with his father. He has made it very clear to his father that he does wish to spend more time with him than this.
He has told him very clearly that because of the way he treated me before the affair was uncovered (" Big Man around the House" - not aggressive) & of course the lies & deceit, he has lost respect for him.

Hello

Thank you for your response.

Please do accept my apologies for my delay in responding to you.

I am sorry to hear that your son feels this way about his father. In a ideal world your should feel comfortable in spending good quality time with both you and his father.

Your ex can make an application to court for a Child Arrangements Order but in reality he might not achieve vey much by doing so.

Courts do want to promote a good relationship with both parents and the courts would expect you to promote the relationship between father and son.

If your ex did make an application to court, then the court would likely ask a Court Childrens and Families Officer (Cafcass) to speak with your son and ascertain his wishes and feelings. Given your sons age and your comments about him being an intelligent young man then the court is likely to give high regard to you sons wishes and feelings.

I rather suspect that the outcome of any children act application by the father would be a 'reasonable contact order'. That being that contact isn't defined but rather the 'door left open' for a relationship to be built up in the future should your son so desire the same. The court would expect you to promote that relationship and it would be helpful if you explain to the court that you are not opposed to such contact and that you have tried to encouarge the same by speaking to your son. There is also the issue of your son's schooling and that you, yourself, are only actually getting limited time with your son, which makes me more of the opinion that a reasonable contact order would be the way that the court would deal with this case.

In any event, before the father could make an application to court, he would have to refer the matter to mediation. If he did not do so the court would reject the application. Mediation is quite a good way fo trying to resolve the issue and some specially trained mediators would also be able to involve your son in the process. You could also consider referring to mediation yourself as a means of seeking resolution.

Let me know if I can help you further.

kind regards

Caroline

Please kindly remember to positively star rate my answer so that I receive credit for helping you. Your question remains open when you leave positive feedback and I can answer your follow up questions for free.

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Customer: replied 12 months ago.
Thank you Caroline. Very clear ,helpful & constructive. Appreciated.