3 Things To Know About Parenting Orders

You have to make suitable arrangements for your children if you and your partner split up. While some couples can agree on informal parenting plans, other couples might need a more formal parenting order that is ratified by a court. These orders lay down a legal framework for the care of children when their parents separate.

What do you need to know about parenting orders?

1. You Don't Have to Be in Dispute to Apply for a Parenting Order

Some parents have to apply for parenting orders because they can't agree on how to look after their children after they split up. Others apply because one partner is unreliable or is refusing to create a structured plan for the future.

However, you can also apply for these orders even if you both agree on how to look after your children. You might simply want to apply for a consent order to create a legally-binding arrangement.

Here, the court checks your plans and, if they are in the best interests of your children, they approve your order. You both get the peace of mind of legal status for your responsibilities into the future.

2. You Can Apply for Interim Parenting Orders

You can't necessarily get a quick permanent parenting order. You have to go through a formal legal process and, sometimes, a court hearing before your order is approved. If you have difficult family circumstances, then this wait might be too long.

For example, if you are worried that your partner might become abusive or violent, then you need to protect your children fast. In some cases, you can apply for interim parenting orders. These orders cover you in emergency situations until you can make a full application.

3. You Can Change Parenting Orders

While parenting orders are legally binding, you can change them in some circumstances. On a simple level, you and your partner might change access arrangements by mutual consent in the future. Here, you can make that change part of a parenting plan which might supersede the relevant arrangements in the order.

Or, you can apply to change the order's terms if your circumstances change. For example, if your partner gets a job in a new state, you might want to add relocation restrictions to the order.

If you think that you need to set up or change a parenting order, then make sure to take legal advice first. Family lawyers can help you negotiate the process so that you get the best legal arrangements for your children.

Reach out to a family law firm for more information.