Parental Responsibility is what gives a parent or step-parent legal rights in respect of a child and also places upon them duties and responsibilities in relation to the welfare of that child. It enables a parent to make important decisions about a child’s upbringing, such as their education.
The following persons automatically have Parental Responsibility of a child:
- The mother of the child.
- A father who is married to the child’s mother at the time the child is born.
- A father who is registered on the child’s birth certificate (only applies to children born after 1 December 2003).
- Second female parents who were married or in a civil partnership with the birth mother when the child was conceived.
- A person who adopts a child.
A person can acquire Parental Responsibility by consent of those other persons with Parental Responsibility or by Order of the Court.
Our services include:
- Preparing Parental Responsibility agreements for parents/step-parents.
- Negotiating with the parent who has care to execute a Parental Responsibility agreement.
- Assisting a parent in applying to the Court for a Parental Responsibility agreement.
- Applying for a Prohibited Steps order where one party seeks to exercise parental rights contrary to the wishes of the other. This could apply where a mother decides to leave the Country permanently without the consent of the father and he wishes to make an application to the Court for an order prohibiting this.
- Applying for a Specific Issue order. This may be appropriate for instance where no agreement can be reached on decisions such as which school a child should attend or which religion a child should follow.
What is a Specific Issue Order?
An Order dealing with a specific issue such as where a child shall attend school or what medical treatment they should have.