Kiteleys Solicitors

Kiteleys Solicitors. 7 St. Stephen's Court, 15-17 St. Stephen's Road, Bournemouth, Dorset. BH2 6LA. Telephone 01425 278866.
Kiteleys Solicitors is the trading style of Kiteleys Solicitors Limited registered in England and Wales, registered number 03113721. VAT Registration No: 658 8813 79.
This firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. A list of directors is available for inspection at our registered office.

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An eye on the law

At Kiteleys we are a team of experienced solicitors, all very enthusiastic about our own specialist areas of the law.

We use this area to share both our own and national news items which we think you might find interesting.

Please feel free to browse and comment on anything that takes your interest.

28th October 2014

Recent developments in Family Law

When parents break up there is always the risk that their children will get caught in the middle of arguments about how much time each child spends with their parent as well as financial arrangements.

Recent developments in family law include:

• From 22 October 2014, a new law came into effect which sets out the legal presumption that the involvement of each parent in a child’s life will be considered beneficial to that child’s welfare, unless the contrary is shown.

• On 23 October 2014, the Ministry of Justice announced a £2 million package of support aimed at helping separating couples avoid expensive and confrontational courtroom battles.

Parental involvement
This change in the law confirms the importance of both parents to be involved in their child’s life. However, a common misconception is that this means a child should spend equal time with each parent, but that is incorrect. The legal definition of “involvement” is in fact; “involvement of some kind, either direct or indirect, but not any particular division of a child’s time”.

Therefore, the frequency, duration and the type of “involvement” can vary greatly from one family to another. It all depends on what is in that individual child’s best interests. Whilst there are some common trends for the manner in which children share their time between parents, there are no fixed rules.

The best way for parents to work out arrangements for their child requires both parents to ensure that their child’s best interests are at the centre of the decision making process. However, this can be easier said than done because ideas and attitudes about parental involvement can be diverse.

Avoiding court room battles
Another common misconception, is that approaching a solicitor with a family problem will mean that you will end up in court, but this is certainly not true with Kiteleys Family Solutions team. Whilst a court process can benefit some people, resolving difference away from court can often be the best solution.

That is why we are encouraged by the recent Government announcement that an extra £2 million is being provided to help couples resolve their problems out of court. We understand that this is likely to include new online information and a helpline.

However, our concern is that generic advice via a computer and telephone is no replacement for face to face help tailored to meet a families specific needs. Only time will tell whether this new Government investment will be enough to plug the gap after years of Government cuts, which have made it increasingly difficult for people to access the specialist advice they need to resolve disputes over financial matters and children arrangements.

If you need help to resolve a family problem, Colin Mitchell, Head of Kiteleys Family Solutions team, is available on 01202 393506 for a free telephone assessment, and also to discuss the availability of fixed fees and other funding options.

Posted by Mark Kiteley.

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Kiteleys Solicitors. 40 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, Dorset. BH13 7LP. Telephone 01425 278866.
Kiteleys Solicitors is the trading style of Kiteleys Solicitors Limited registered in England and Wales, registered number 03113721. VAT Registration No: 658 8813 79.
This firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. A list of directors is available for inspection at our registered office.