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Child Arrangements Order

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Child Arrangements Order

After separation or divorce when the parents can’t come to a decision on their own, one or both parents may apply to the court for a child arrangements order.

A Child Arrangements Order is a Court Order that sets out details of who is responsible for the care of a child. This type of Court Order is usually used in cases where the parents cannot agree between them how to split the care of their child/children.

A ‘child arrangements order’ decides:

  • where your child lives;
  • when your child spends time with each parent;
  • when and what other types of contact take place (phone calls, for example).

Why is Child Arrangement Order is necessary

Divorcing or separating parents can’t always come to an agreement on matters like child custody, especially if the separation has been an acrimonious one. When the parents can’t come to a decision on their own, one or both parents may apply to the court for a child arrangements order. This order can stipulate where and with whom a child lives, when and where they have contact with a non-custodial parent, and certain other matters relating to the child’s welfare.


Who Can Apply For A Child Arrangements Order?

Certain categories of people are entitled to make an application for a child arrangements order under Section 8 without having to seek permission from the court first, and they are:

  • the parent, guardian or special guardian of a child;
  • any person who has parental responsibility;
  • anyone who holds a residence order in respect of the child;
  • any party to a marriage or civil partnership where the child is a child of the family;
  • anyone with whom the child has lived for at least three years;
  • anyone who has obtained the consent of:
    • the local authority if the child is in their care; or
    • everyone who has parental responsibility for the child.

Other people can make an application to the court for permission to issue an application for a child arrangements order. It is usually via this route that wider family members such as grandparents are able to apply for orders in respect of their grandchildren. In deciding whether to give permission the court will take into account, among other things:

  • the nature of the application;
  • the applicant’s connection with the child; and
  • the risk there might be of the proposed application disrupting the child’s life to such an extent that they would be harmed by it.




Our expert team of child arrangements solicitors are specialists in dealing with child arrangements order applications. Our specialist child arrangements solicitors have wealth of knowledge and extensive experience of handling child arrangements order applications. Our highly experienced child arrangements lawyers have successfully helped a large number of clients with their child arrangements order applications.

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