While the end of a marriage through a divorce is usually a tearful one, there are some exceptions when both parties just mutually consent to part ways. Of course, in the UK, such a no-fault divorce is not permitted unless you both lived separately with mutual consent for at least two years prior to filing for a divorce. In any event, there are actually a lot of things to be sorted out once you dissolve a marriage relationship including how your properties should be divided. Furthermore, if you both have children, then this will also be taken into account. Specifically, child custody UK must be settled.
Parental Responsibility In Child Custody UK
Under the Children Act of 1989, the term “parental responsibility” is aptly defined as “all the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law a parent of a child has in relation to the child and his property.” This is very important because along with parental responsibility (or PR), you are also conferred with the authority to make decisions for the welfare of the child under your care. Having a shared PR with your spouse or former spouse can get a bit complicated, but basically, you are free to care for the child however you deem fit and within the bounds of law. Consulting with each other is optional but not required. The day to day arrangements that you make for a mutual child is up to you – this includes essential things such as choice of meals and clothing.
- The birth mother of a child is the person with the preferred PR for a child. Meanwhile, fathers may also have PR but subject to certain conditions. As prescribed by law, these are:
Being married to the child’s mother at the time the child was born or marrying the child’s mother after they are born
- Being named on the child’s birth certificate if the child was born after 1.12.2003
- By entering into a PR agreement with everyone else who has PR
- By obtaining a court order confirming the child lives with you, or a court order granting PR
How Do You Decide The Hours For Each Parent Under Child Custody UK?
Ideally, this is up to you and your former partner to decide. The courts will not intervene in this matter of child custody UK unless you specifically ask for a court order in order to fairly set the time that the child shall have in the care of each separated parent.
Is The Mother Always The Preferred Person With PR?
Not really. If the matter of child custody is brought to court because you are in dispute with your partner as to who should have primary parental responsibility, then it is a matter of evidence between the parties involved as to who gets child custody UK.
In any event, the courts shall render a decision based on what would be in the best interests of the child. Take note that if the child is of tender age, then the mother will most likely be preferred by the courts.