Mothers are being reminded that their children have the right to spend time with them if they so wish, particularly on special occasions.
As Mother’s Day approaches on 14 March, respected family lawyer Rupinder Nandra is warning mums in advance that they need to make sure contact arrangements are in place so they do not miss out on quality time together.
Ms Nandra, from Midlands law firm mfg Solicitors, is concerned that too many divorced parents think the law specifies an equal amount of time with the mother and father, but this is not the case.
“There is no definition of the time a child should spend with each parent and that’s why it’s really important to make sure that contact arrangements are in place in advance of special occasions, such as Mother’s Day which is fast approaching.”
Ms Nandra said if an agreement cannot be made between the parents then it is vital to take legal advice. If necessary, a court may need to make a Child Arrangements Order specifying when and how contact takes place.
“Parents need to consider first and foremost what is in the child’s best interests – even if that does not fit their own wishes.
“Ideally, they need to communicate with each other and not use the child as the messenger. If the child is old enough to say what he or she wants, then that has to be taken into account.
“If an agreement cannot be made then legal advice has to be sought as early as possible. A costly and drawn out court battle can still be avoided if the parents are willing to try family mediation or family counselling.
“At the centre of all of this are the children. Despite the challenging period we are seeing caused by the coronavirus outbreak, children will still want to be with their mums on Mother’s Day this year. Getting these issues ironed out sensibly and in time will ensure everyone can get on with enjoying spending time together.”
For assistance and advice readers can call Rupinder Nandra at firstname.lastname@example.org.