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- Are you a father?
- Have you been denied the right to see your child?
- Do you want access to see your child?
If your answer to the above questions is yes, then give one of our father’s rights solicitors, a call today.
Our Specialist Father’s Rights Lawyers
We are specialists in the area of father’s rights. We will explain to you exactly where you stand legally and where possible, assist you in gaining contact with your child or children.
Our specialist divorce lawyers receive a number of enquiries (daily) from fathers who have queries concerning their legal position. Many fathers are ill informed as to their rights. We can often assist you here, whether the advice is required before separation or a divorce or even in contemplation of the same.
When a family breakdown occurs, often the child ends up residing with the mother. Invariably this means that the father will need to (formally) seek contact with his child. However although the child may be residing with the mother this does not mean that the mother has custody of the children. Custody or residence as it is known in England and Wales is only granted by the courts.
The grant of custody / residence does not lessen the rights of the father in any way. In fact it is only a statement confirming that the child’s primary residence is with their mother. A father’s right to have contact with his child is determined on whether he has parental responsibility, which is a different aspect (see further below).
At Saracens we have experienced fathers rights lawyers that will quickly ascertain whether you have (or can gain) parental responsibility over your child and how this can be acquired.
What Is Parental Responsibility?
Parental responsibility is the right, duty, power, responsibility and authority a parent has over its child. To gain the legal right to decide whether your child receives, say, a particular medical treatment, or the right to decide which school your child attends, or which religion your child follows (etc), you must first have parental responsibility.
Unmarried Father’s Rights
Parental responsibility is different for married and unmarried fathers. If you are an unmarried father, you may not automatically have the automatic right to parental responsibility in the same way as an unmarried mother or a father who is separated from his wife.
One of the primary conditions is the date of birth of your child. If you are an unmarried father, the current law says that your child will need to have been born after the 1st December 2003 for you to gain parental responsibility as well as being named on the birth certificate.
However if your child was born before 1st December 2003 and / or you are not registered on your child’s birth certificate the scenario is very different.
Can A Child Access Lawyer Assist Me In Acquiring Parental Responsibility?
There are three ways that parental responsibility can be acquired:
- You can enter into a parental responsibility agreement with the child’s mother; or
- If this is not possible (by mutual consent), you can formally apply to the Court to seek a ‘Parental Responsibility Order’; or
- You can instead acquire parental responsibility by applying for a residence order, or (if unmarried), by marrying the child’s mother.
Whether you are being denied contact with your child or you simply wish to formulate an existing contact arrangement i.e. into a formal document, our trained father’s rights specialist lawyers are ready to assist.
Our Legal Advisers Are Members of Resolution
We adhere to a code of practice and will seek to gain contact, wherever possible, in a conciliatory manner. Research has shown that matters resolved diplomatically, are usually concluded faster and in a more cost effective manner.
We are of course driven by your instructions to us. The general process is as follows:
- To begin with, we often attempt communication with the mother / her representative, where possible. The aim is to seek an early settlement and persuade the mother to agree to a defined contact between you and the child. We understand how the distance between you and your child can be painful and will push this strategy at the outset.
- If the mother opposes contact, we will swiftly instigate court proceedings where appropriate. We will make representations at Court that it is in the interests of child to have regular contact with both parents. The way these representations are made are of course critical and unless the child’s welfare is threatened we have enjoyed huge success in persuading the Court to grant contact between the father and child.
Our Child Access Lawyers Can Offer You a Payment Plan
We are aware that many fathers are anxious about costs escalating, which is why we are happy to enter into a payment plan to help you budget.
If the mother of your child is denying you contact with your child, or if you are not happy with the current contact arrangements our father’s rights specialist team can help you resolve this.
Contact us today on 0203 588 3527 to find out more.