Looking after the children - Sole custody

Statistically there are more sole orders made than orders for joint custody.

Parents are being encouraged more and more to try and agree sufficiently over the children to make a joint custody order viable.

Where a sole custody order is granted, for example to the mother, it allows her to make decisions with regard to the child and specifically those which relate to education, religion and medical care.

The sole custody order does not wholly exclude the other parent in that there is a duty on the custodial parent to keep the non-custodian informed as to the children's welfare, activities, educational and religious plans. Also, it is possible for the non-custodial parent to have access to the child or children.

He or she will, therefore, have direct contact with them and be able to keep in touch with the events in their lives.

The non-custodial parent can make an application to the court for directions without seeking to vary the custody order, if he or she feels that the custodial parent is not acting in the child's best interest especially over religious and educational matters.

A sole custody order is often granted in a situation where the parents have experienced a particularly acrimonious separation and divorce and as a result are quite unable to communicate with each other.

If for this, or for any other reason, their communication simply results in angry abuse, then it may be considered impossible for the parents to discuss rationally the plans for their children's future. In these cases, the sole custody order might very well be granted.

KIRSTY APP on divorce - Next:

Looking after the children - Care and control

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