The law says that care arrangements for children should be those that are in their ‘best interests’. What does that mean? Well, in considering what arrangements are in a child’s best interests after separation, the law says that there are two major pillars to consider—the need to protect a child from harm (psychological, physical abuse/harm, family violence, neglect etc.) and the right of a child to have a meaningful relationship with both parents.
If you and your partner are committed to working through things together yourselves but are struggling to come up with an arrangement that you’re both happy with, consider meeting with a child psychologist.
Child psychology has been very influential in the determination by Judges of appropriate arrangements for children (particularly young children) after separation. A child psychologist will be able to give you both some insight into your child/ren’s developmental needs and how you and your partner can best meet them. They can help to mediate and reach an agreement. Where you and your partner have a young child together, (in most circumstances), you’re best off having a review mechanism or trial period (for example three months, six months, 12 months) for new care arrangements to see how well your child copes before increasing time or dramatically changing the care arrangements.
We can prepare documents that formalising your agreement about care arrangements for your children now and into the future, with a potential review mechanism. Talk to us today about how that can work for you and your family.