School Holiday Contact – Are you prepared?

20 July 2018

Extended contact with children over school holidays is always an emotive issue for separated parents. Year on year we see more and more parents seeking advice on trying to establish some form of contact via the Courts often having already exhausted all other options including mediation. CAFCASS (The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) has published its latest figures on applications being received which shows that in January 2017 they received 3356 new applications being a huge 17% increase from January 2016.

The simple truth is however most parents can and should be able to avoid Court by ensuring they communicate, plan ahead, compromise and ultimately put the needs of their children before anything else.

Before doing anything, where appropriate, try to discuss with your ex-partner what arrangements should be in place for the children over the holiday ideally well in advance of the holiday. Often, some form of compromise will be required e.g. taking into account each other’s work commitments where both parents are working etc. Having reached the agreement it is then extremely important to stick to the agreement as failing to do so will often lead to your children feeling disappointed and frustrated.

If you are unable to reach an agreement with your ex-partner then it would be reasonable to look to speak to a family solicitor and seek some guidance / advice on your particular circumstances. Our family solicitors will always provide you with cost effective, pragmatic and sensible solutions to ensure matters can be resolved swiftly. If all else fails then Court applications will become necessary.