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For better or for worse: staying amicable after a relationship breakdown

November 30, 2021

Recently, research has found that 25% of parents said their children showed a loss of confidence due to family breakdown, and a similar proportion said that their children had suffered from depression due to this.

A breakdown in a relationship is rarely an easy thing to overcome. Whilst the emotions will understandably be raw, it is important to consider whether matters can be resolved amicably. This is especially important where children are involved.

As lawyers, we are often faced with parents whose relationships have ended badly for one reason or another, and the children are caught in the middle of it all, through no fault of their own. This can be incredibly difficult for a child, as they cannot ‘choose sides’ for fear of upsetting one or both parents.

If parties are able to come to an agreement between themselves, this is always preferable than going to court*. This could be a set routine for a child that they spend certain days with one parent, and the remaining days with the other parent. It could be that they spend their birthday with one parent and Christmas with the other. As parents, you are best placed to suggest an arrangement that works for the family, rather than asking a court to impose something that may not work.

The key thing to always keep in mind is coming up with an arrangement that suits the child. Children should not suffer just because their parents have separated. They should not be uprooted from their routine, have to lose friends, or have their schooling impacted.

If your relationship has ended and you are considering your next steps, before speaking to a family lawyer, consider whether mediation is appropriate. Mediation can be very productive in helping families to reach an arrangement that works for them.

29 November to 3 December 2021 is Resolution’s Good Divorce week, and there is a wealth of information on their website about mediation and how it can help separating families. Resolution have a specific section of their website that offers parents advice and practical tips; and you can visit it here: https://resolution.org.uk/parenting-through-separation/

At AFG LAW, we will try and resolve matters as quickly and efficiently as possible, to minimise both stress and cost to you. If you are able to separate amicably and wish to divorce your spouse, we can offer fixed fee divorce packages, provided that the divorce is not contested and there are no finances to resolve.

Speak to our team of specialists today, either by website, email familydepartment@afglaw.co.uk or call 01204 377600.

*It is important to note that there are some circumstances in where an agreement is not appropriate, such as where there are serious allegations of abuse. If this applies to you, you should seek independent legal advice.”