Once referred to as residence and contact applications, child arrangement orders specify with whom the children shall live and the time they spend with the other party.

The court has a wide discretion regarding the orders it can make in relation to children which can include shared care, term time and school holiday contact, special occasion contact and much more. The aim of Court proceedings is to determine a workable routine that can provide clarity and stability for the children’s ongoing relationship with both parties. However, it must be highlighted that court involvement should be the last option for parties when all other forms of alternative dispute resolution have broken down.

Before applying for a child arrangements order, you will need to attend a mediation information and assessment meeting, also known as a MIAM, unless exemptions apply. Only if mediation is not deemed suitable or the process breaks down will you be provided with paperwork to allow you to proceed to Court.

Click here to see our helpful flowchart with more information on the Court process.