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Harris, Law Specialist
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2851
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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I'm looking for advice relating to a possible separation

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Hello;i'm looking for advice relating to a possible separation with my wife. She has been ill for the last six months and wishes to take my son and live in Spain; returning for a 9 day period each month.We have not been getting on so well for a while but have been married for 20 years. Our son is 12.
We cannot agree with how use the proceeds from our recent house sale.I think its financially better to buy a property in the UK now,(we are currently both renting in separate places due to animals);and then to buy the place in Spain. My view is we should remain married although we have some differences of opinion and have our names on both sets of deeds.
My wife has already put a deposit on a Spanish property and wishes to go soon.Also; due to my son having had M.E; my wife removed my son from school almost a year ago to home school him.Even being fair to my wife, very little schooling has occured in the last year. The specialist who was last treating my son some months ago, was suggesting that my son could and should gradually return to school; he would now be back almost full time.My son was discharged from their care due to my wife being determined to homeschool. His blood work seemed to be back in the realms of healthy again.
My fear is not my wife keeping me from seeing my son when we have agreed , as I think she would keep that end of a possible agreement.However; I feel we need to buy here first to have a secure base and i'm not very happy with his prospects for education. Those are the basics and I would be grateful for any advise.
I suppose my question is; If I can provide a place to live and get medical back up to state my son is ready to return to school; do you think I would have a good chance of keeping my son in the uk, or do you think my wife would be given preference as she is the mother? I look forward to hearing from you . Thankyou.

Hi, thank you for your question. As you are married your wife cannot take your son and relocate to Spain if you do not consent to this. If she attempts to do so you can apply to court for a Prohibited Steps Order using form C100 and a £215 court fee to your local family court to prevent her leaving. As there appears to be some disagreement between you regarding the move, it is likely that a court will need to decide on the relocation and this can be done using the same form for a specific issue order and a £215 court fee to your local family court. The relocation will be a major change to your son's life and the court will not decide this just on the basis of her being the mother. The court will need to consider all the facts and circumstances and compare how his life will be here, and how it will be in Spain and then decide what is in his best interest. The court will also consider how any move will impact contact with you and the mother, as well as his wider family. For your information the Court will take into consideration the following when making a decision regarding the application:

1. The wishes and feelings of the child concerned
2. The child’s physical, emotional and educational needs
3. The likely effect on the child if circumstances changed as a result of the courts decision
4. The child’s age, sex, backgrounds and any other characteristics which will be relevant to the court’s decision
5. Any harm the child has suffered or may be at risk of suffering
6. Capability of the child’s parents (or any other person the courts find relevant) at meeting the child’s needs
7. The powers available to the court in the given proceedings

If you have any further questions regarding this please let me know. In the meantime if you found this information helpful please provide a positive rating using the stars at the top of this page. I will not be credited for answering your question without a positive rating. Thank you

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks for you're reply. I'm aware that we have to be in agreement for my wife to leave the Uk and that without that agreement my wife's actions would be deemed as child abduction. I don't want this situation to become any worse, but I feel I may have to withhold consent unless she agrees to the purchase of a UK property first; then the Spanish as mentioned before. I want to have a base for her and my son to return to especially if anything goes wrong over there; such as my wife's health deteriorating.Part of my problem is that i'm partly self employed and have some accounts being prepared that I will need to give to a mortgage company to obtain a mortgage for the size of property we need. This will take time and as a single person I may not be able to get what I need for that purchase. I know if I agree to her going it can be through a legally binding arrangement and also a mirror arrangement for Spain; however, I don't think there is anything I can do to make sure he is schooled to a high enough standard. Any thoughts?

If you agree for her to go I would suggest that you have a child arrangement order in place so that arrangements are set in stone - you can then have a mirror order in Spain so that it can be enforced if she breaches it. But again there needs to be serious consideration as to whether this is in the child's best interests especially given you have stated that the mother is unwell.

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