Parental Responsibility

Whether you are an unmarried father who was not named on the birth certificate of a child, a step parent, same sex parent, or other family member wishing to acquire Parental Responsibility, our experienced team of family solicitors will be able to assist you.

Our experienced team of FisherWright solicitors regularly assist individuals in all circumstances in obtaining Parental Responsibility, and possess a wealth of experience in this field. If you wish to obtain specialist assistance from our solicitors, please do not hesitate to contact or specialists today.

What is Parental Responsibility?

Parental responsibility is defined by law as ‘all the rights, duties, powers and responsibilities and authority that by law, a parent of a child has in relation to the child and their property’.

Parental Responsibility broadly encompasses, the duty to look after a child, to provide a home for him/her, to educate the child, ability to make decisions as to whether the child is to live, to elect a guardian, to make decisions regarding medical treatment, to provide permission for the child to marry, to make decisions regarding the name of the child and to take the child on holidays.

Methods by which Parental Responsibility can be obtained

If you are looking to acquire Parental Responsibility, our specialist solicitors will be able to thoroughly assess your circumstances and advise you as to the best possible method of obtaining Parental Responsibility. There are however, two predominant methods by which solicitors may assist you, which include a Parental Responsibility Agreement, or an application for a Parental Responsibility Order or by way of a Child Arrangements Order.

Parental Responsibility Agreement

If you are an unmarried father or a stepparent and you are on good terms with the individual who has Parental Responsibility in respect of the child, it may be possible for you to acquire Parental Responsibility by way of a Parental Responsibility Agreement. A Parental Responsibility is a formal agreement, which will need to be filed with the Court. In order for such an agreement to be valid, it will need to be signed and witnessed by an officer of the Court.

Parental Responsibility Order

In certain circumstances where parties have separated on hostile terms, it may not be possible for you to acquire Parental Responsibility by way of an agreement with the child’s parent. In such instances, you may alternatively make an application to the Court for a Parental Responsibility Order.

In considering whether to make an Parental Responsibility Order, the Court will consider a variety of factors which include, the welfare of the child/children and the individuals reasons for applying for Parental Responsibility,

Child Arrangements Order

It may be possible for an individual to acquire Parental Responsibility upon the grant of a Child Arrangements Order in their favour. For example, if an individual has commenced proceedings for a Child Arrangements Order, and an Order is made stipulating that the child is to reside with him/her, the Court will also be required to make a Parental Responsibility Order in their favour, simultaneously with the Child Arrangements Order. However, in instances where a Child Arrangements Order is granted solely for contact, the Court will be at discretion to make a Parental Responsibility Order in the individuals favour.

In order to discuss the arrangements concerning your children, and exactly how you would like us to help, please contact FisherWright Solicitors today. We look forward to being of assistance.