• 06 Sep 2017 How do you get to see your children following divorce or separation?

    How do you get to see your children following divorce or separation?

    It can be a distressing time when you split up from your spouse or partner, especially if you have children and for one reason or another you are being stopped from seeing them.  In many cases it is advised to take action at an early stage. At Hepburn Delaney our Family Lawyers can take you through a number of options to enable you and your children to start spending quality time together as soon as possible.  These options include:

    1. You speaking to your child’s other parent direct in a quiet, neutral venue.

    This is usually the quickest, cheapest and most effective method but we appreciate that it is sometimes “easier said than done”.  We will help you to plan for the meeting and to look at any obstacles which have been put in your way to see how they can be overcome.

    2. Mediation

    We have accredited Family Mediators who can arrange for you and your “ex” to meet in a safe and neutral environment to talk about the arrangements for you to have contact with your children. Mediation can be a cheaper and more effective method of resolving your issues than a court battle and allows you to stay in control of important decisions in the children’s lives rather than handing them over to be decided by a court or arbitrator. Meetings can be arranged very quickly making mediation a quick and flexible way of sorting out arrangements without a court battle.

    3. Solicitors correspondence

    If you have still not been able to get to see your children we could write to your child’s other parent on your behalf. You will remain in full control of the process as you will see drafts of all letters before they are sent and will be forwarded copies of all responses.

    4. Child Contact Centre

    Child contact centres are safe, friendly and neutral places where children of separated families can play and spend time with the non-resident parent. We have close links with a number of centres in Tring, Hemel Hempstead, Watford, St Albans and Harpenden. We can make referrals and arrange for you to make a visit to see whether you feel any particular centre would be right for you and your family. Using a contact centre can often be reassuring for the parent with whom the children are living and can therefore be a way of breaking a “stalemate” or perhaps be used as a stepping stone to a longer term arrangement.

    5. If all else fails we can make an application to the court or an arbitrator on your behalf for a ” child arrangements order” or advise you how to make such an application yourself. Our Family Lawyers are experienced in court proceedings and will explain the process and ensure your interests are protected every step of the way.

    If you would like to discuss any or all of your options with us please contact Gemma Keats at our Hemel Hempstead office on 01442 218090 or email info@hepburndelaney.co.uk