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JimLawyer
JimLawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  Senior Associate Solicitor
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Is there a way I can find out my rights as a father. Is it

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Is there a way I can find out my rights as a father. Is it possible to have a 50/50 split on custody of our 3 kids and 50/50 on our house.
JA: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?
Customer: Yes we had an agreement in principle, nothing through the solicitors as things were amicable, but now not so much. So nothing has gone to family court yet.
JA: Family Court normally sits in a local County and Magistrates' Court. Do you know the location of the court? If not, what county do you live in?
Customer: I'm in wiltshire
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: No that's all I need to know about, thank you

Hello, my name is ***** ***** I am a qualified lawyer happy to help you today.

You have a right to regular contact with your children.

As their Father you have a right to see them regularly and the family court will encourage this and for you to have an active part in their upbringing. The court will order arrangements for you to see them on specified days and for how long if you cannot agree this with your ex partner. You can also ask for joint custody so they with you for part of the week if you wish. 50% is therefore viable if you want this.

If custody is to be considered then the welfare checklist of the children is relevant :

www.inbrief.co.uk/child-law/child-welfare-checklist

You need to contact your ex and say you will have to apply for a child arrangements order and if you are successful then you will ask the court to order she pays the cost. Give your ex 7 days to confirm their stance.

If she continues to refuse to allow you more contact, you need to contact a mediator as the court will want to know whether you have attended mediation first before involving the court - the mediator will contact your ex and if she refuses to attend then you are free to make the application to the court. This is called “MIAM”, or a mediation assessment.

To find a mediator in your local area, use this site : www.familymediationcouncil.org.uk/find-local-mediator

In order to apply to the court, you will need to fill out and send form C100 (copy attached) with a cheque of £215 payable to HMCTS to your local family court centre. The form can also be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/form-c100-application-under-the-children-act-1989-for-a-child-arrangements-prohibited-steps-specific-issue-section-8-order-or-to-vary-or-discharge

Or you can ring the court and pay over the phone (or pay in person if you go directly to the court and pay at the counter). If you are on low income/have low savings you can apply for a fee exemption here:

www.gov.uk/get-help-with-court-fees

Once you apply the court will list a hearing where you and your ex attends. There will be a family advisor there too (from Cafcass) and if arrangements can be agreed then a consent order will be drawn up.

In terms of the house, if you are a co-owner then you can ask for 50% - if you own it jointly then the default position is 50/50 unless there is a deed of trust to say something differently.
I hope this helps - if you can please accept the answer and give me a 5 star rating (there should be a button at the top of your screen to do this), I can answer follow up questions at no extra charge and Just Answer will credit me for helping you today.

Many thanks,

Jim

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