When there is a child or children involved in a separation many difficult and complex decisions need to be made.
The law does not mandate that there should be shared custody, each case is decided on its own merits. Jeremy Sutton and his team can help you reach an agreement with the other party and document it accordingly. If agreement cannot be reached and your case progresses to court, Jeremy can represent you. He has access to experts whose opinions are well respected in court, unpicking issues like where and with whom the child will live, the contact they will have with the other parent and how each parent will contribute financially to raising the child.
For the past 20 years Jeremy Sutton has specialised in high net worth, financially complex divorce cases. He knows what works to get the job done assiduously, fairly and quickly and how to protect you and your significant assets through divorce. Within his practice, he is backed by a wider and equally expert team of barristers who deal in all matters associated with divorce including property, children and custody.
For more information on child custody and father’s rights please book a consultation.
Generally the mother and father are joint guardians of the child; parents are often referred to as ‘natural guardians’.
However, although the mother is an automatic guardian, the father is only a guardian if:
Is there anything my ex-wife can do to stop my girlfriend from picking up my son at school if I cannot get off work in time to pick him up?
Your ex-wife will often object to your girlfriend picking up your son, here are tips:
Each case is different and consult a lawyer for your own situation and how it applies.
No. The law does not specify how much time children should spend with each parent and there is no rule as to 50/50 sharing of custody.
The welfare and best interests of the child are the paramount consideration when deciding on custody arrangements.
What school a child goes to is a guardianship decision which ultimately means that both parents must be consulted before any decisions are made.
There are a number of options that you can take to resolve this issue however I would recommend raising the issue with your ex first.
If the two of you are unable to resolve the issue between yourselves, come and see us and we can discuss the options available to you.
The father who is not married to or in a de facto relationship with the mother can apply to be appointed a guardian by the Family Court. The Court will generally do this unless it is against the child’s best interests.
A father may wish to be appointed as a guardian instead of the mother. To do this, the father needs to show the Court that the mother is either unwilling or for some grave reason, unfit to carry out her guardianship responsibilities.
In addition, the father must show the Court that because of this, the child’s welfare and best interests would be served by an order in his favour. The court requires very strong evidence from the father when considering this kind of application and an order will not be made lightly.
A father who is already a guardian of a child can apply to the Family Court to make a declaration of guardianship and recognise their guardianship status officially. It might be wise to do this in a situation where a mother and father have separated, and the mother has indicated she doesn’t want the father involved in the child’s life.
Generally, if a father wishes to be involved in his child’s life, his relationship with the mother was more than fleeting, and he has not had guardianship rights removed, the Court will make the declaration. However as always, the paramount consideration will be the welfare and best interests of the child.
Sometimes the Court can fund supervised contact at a contact centre. You will need to ask the Court to do this and set out the reasons why.
Unfortunately, if the Court declines to fund your contact, and there is no agreement to alternative supervised contact, your options are limited – either find the funds somehow or go without contact pending a hearing.
If you would like to discuss this further with us, please contact our office and make an appointment.
If you are a father with a busy job, you do not need to be a “weekend dad”.
It is certainly possible for you to have a significant share of the care of your children, and we can help you in obtaining a custody arrangement which you are happy with.
There are various grounds upon which Child, Youth and Family can uplift children. Were you served with any Court orders? Was a place of safety warrant issued? Did you agree to the children being uplifted from you? If you are unsure of the answer to any of these questions, we would recommend making an appointment to see someone from our office. We can explain the process to you and try and find out more information on your behalf.
At the moment, there is nothing that the Police can do to uplift your son from you. The only way that the Police would be able to do this is if there was a Parenting Order in place. Without this, the Police are powerless to do anything. If you have serious concerns that your ex partner may try to take your son, I would strongly recommend that you contact our office and discuss the appropriate steps to prevent this from happening.
The Family Court generally does not like including the playing of such calls as evidence, and such evidence may not be admitted in Court.
There is a danger that such recordings can become obsessive and hinder the normal conversation in activities between the parties. It is somewhat artificial in that the party recording the conversation knows of such existence, and the party that is being recorded has no such knowledge normally.
It is often easier in the case of emails and text messages to have these items as evidence. In such cases, it is much easier to obtain the transcript of entire conversations and exchanges to see the context that they have been held in. However, in the situation of a single phone call this may not truly reflect the complete situation of the parties.
I would be cautious and generally not encourage a client to record phone calls or to use such phone calls into evidence.
Some common joint custody arrangements are:
A joint custody arrangement is not always in your child’s best interests and there are a number of options available. A shared care arrangement need not consist of a substantially equal timesplit, it may be that one parent has the children on the weekends or every second weekend.
We could help you apply for what is called a discharge without conviction. A discharge without conviction is granted when the Court is satisfied that the consequences of a conviction would be out of proportion to the seriousness of the offence.