How do I get Parental Responsibility for my Child?
As matrimonial solicitors, we are well-rehearsed in legal parental rights and responsibilities. The issue of parental responsibility often comes up during the breakdown of a relationship where there are children involved and arrangements for them need to be made as a result of the divorce or separation. So, what is parental responsibility and how do you obtain it for your child?
What is Parental Responsibility?
All mothers and most fathers have legal rights and responsibilities as a parent which are known as ‘parental responsibility’. If you have parental responsibility, your most important role is not only to provide a home for the child and protect and maintain the child, but also to discipline the child, choose and provide for the child’s education, agree to the child’s medical treatment, name the child and agree to any change of name, and look after the child’s property. Regardless of whether they have parental responsibility or not, parents must also ensure that their child is supported financially.
How do I get Parental Responsibility?
A mother automatically has parental responsibility for her child from birth. But being the father of a child does not automatically mean that you have parental responsibility. For example, if a father is not married to the mother and is not registered on a child's birth certificate, he will not automatically have parental responsibility.
If you are a parent who does not already have parental responsibility, it is possible to apply to the court to make a Parental Responsibility Order.
Parental Responsibility Agreements & Court Orders
If you happen to be a father and you do not have parental responsibility for your child and wish to obtain it, you can fill in a parental responsibility agreement. However, this must be in agreement of the mother. This agreement can then be taken to the local family court and signed and witnessed. But what if the mother doesn’t agree?
This is where it is advisable to consult a solicitor who can act on your behalf and guide you through the process of applying for a court order, so that you can successfully obtain parental responsibility for your child. In the event of a separation, you may also wish to apply for a Child Arrangements Order if you are unable to agree on arrangements such as who the child will live with, or how much time they will spend with the other parent, for example.
Advice and Support from Matrimonial Solicitors
Here at Vines Legal, we’ve got extensive knowledge and experience in applying for and obtaining parental responsibility, as well as years of experience in helping our clients through the process of separation and divorce. If you are considering a separation, or going through a divorce, and want to ensure that arrangements regarding your children are decided upon as smoothly and amicably as possibly, please contact us on 01246 555610 for a free initial consultation. We’d be happy to explain all of the options available to you in a friendly, professional manner.
By Vines Legal on 19 Mar 2023, 10:29 AM