Child Law

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Child Solicitors Manchester & Stockport – Child Custody Lawyers


The Child Law Solicitors at Clifford Johnston & Co. understand completely the emotional toll that separation and divorce can take, particularly when there are children involved.

You may be concerned about parental responsibility, need advice on how to best act in your child’s interests or be unable to agree on where they should live or when they should spend time with each parent. Whatever the issue, our team of family law specialists will provide you with bespoke legal advice, tailored to your particular situation to help you to reach a swift and positive resolution.

We frequently help families dealing with the impact of divorce and will handle your case sensitively and with compassion throughout.

Your family is our priority, and we are here to help.


How can Clifford Johnston’s Child Law Solicitors help?

Your children are the most important people in your life, so we want to help you reach a resolution as quickly and cost-effectively as possible. It is crucial to minimise the upheaval for all of you and to help reduce the impact on your children.

Our discussions with you about their living arrangements following a divorce or separation are among the most important you will ever have. We will provide you with clear, straight-forward advice to ensure that you are fully informed and involved at all stages. We pride ourselves on our understanding and supportive approach and our friendly team will immediately put you at your ease.

Dealing with disputes need not result in court proceedings, which are always considered to be a last resort. We can engage in negotiations on your behalf, or simply advise you how to undertake your own. We can also help you to set up mediation sessions with a specialist Family Mediator, and we can assist you in drawing up a Parental Responsibility Agreement which will act as a template for future child arrangements.

If it is unfeasible to reach an agreement regarding a parenting plan, and court proceedings are issued, our Child Law Solicitors will be there to guide you through these with as little animosity as possible between the parents and as little impact as possible on the children.

We regularly provide high quality family law services to clients throughout Greater Manchester across many specialist areas including:

Child Arrangement Orders deal with issues such as which parent children will live with, and how much time the children will spend with the other. Our Child Law Solicitors will always aim for a resolution on these matters through mediation before involving the court.

First Hearing and Dispute Resolution Appointment (FHDRA) is the first court hearing which allows you to present your case and is intended to solve any early disputes.

Our team of solicitors can help you if you want to relocate your child and require consent of the other parent, or to make a Leave To Remove application to the court.

Clifford Johnston can advise on the legal process and solutions available to you, to allow you to rebuild your relationship with your grandchildren and can advise grandparents who might want to look after a grandchild full-time.

We regularly help local stepfamilies with all matters relating to Step-parents legal rights and parental responsibility so for professional, confidential advice contact us today.

Whatever stage you are at in your separation or divorce proceedings you can rest assured that we will work tirelessly to achieve a positive conclusion for all involved as quickly as possible.


I am divorcing or separating from my partner. What will happen to my children?

Most divorcing or separating parents make the decisions relating to their children between themselves without the need for any intervention by the courts. Where this is not possible, we are here to offer maximum support and guidance throughout any negotiations, with the welfare of your child paramount in any discussion and dialogue.

If mediation fails for any reason and you find that you are unable to come to an agreement regarding the arrangements for your children, including possible child maintenance agreements, you may choose to refer the questions that need deciding to the court. A Judge will decide where they should live, and when they will spend time with the other.

The court must make decisions based on the child’s needs. They will take into consideration:

  • their feelings and wishes, in the light of their age and understanding
  • how any change is likely to affect them
  • their individual emotional, physical, and educational needs
  • the capability of each parent
  • age, gender, and background of the child

The court may consider any other circumstances which are considered relevant along with these criteria.


Will I need to go to a family court?

If you are going through a separation or divorce, or any other circumstances which could involve your children’s living situation, you may be worried about appearing in court.

We always do our utmost to help clients seek a resolution about their children’s living arrangements through mediation and negotiation and we have an excellent success rate with this approach. This usually helps to maintain a positive relationship with the other parent and the children.

Clifford Johnston’s Child Law Solicitors are experts in a number of resolution methods, such as Alternative Dispute Resolutions, Collaborative Family Law, and family mediation.

Depending on the process that you choose to use, you may have a solicitor appointed to each party, or choose one as an arbitrator. Agreements made out of court can often be enforced in the Family Court, making these methods quicker and more effective for many situations.

In instances where this isn’t the best way to proceed, we can help you to apply for an order and support you through the legal process. Obtaining a Court Order for your case will ensure the decision of a judge in the Family Court will be enforceable for as long as it is valid.

If you are unsure about what method best fits your circumstances, contact us today. Our Child Law Solicitors can tailor your mediation or litigation process to your needs, and make sure you reach the best possible outcome with the least possible animosity.


What is a MIAM?

Terms surrounding family mediation can often be confusing, such as the difference between voluntary family mediation and a MIAM.

A Mediation Information Assessment Meeting (MIAM) is a term that describes the initial meeting with a mediator. It will often help you decide if mediation is a viable solution for your case.

While mediation is not a compulsory process, attending a MIAM is necessary if you decide to apply to the Family Court for any resolution in the future. It is generally a good idea to go through a MIAM, as you may decide to continue with the mediation process, or have completed the assessment for a future court application if necessary.


Contact Our Child Law Solicitors Today

Our child law lawyers regularly help local families with all matters relating to child custody and residence, so for professional and confidential child custody advice contact us today.

Our friendly team of family lawyers will deal with your enquiry regarding children law sensitively and with understanding, so contact us today for helpful and supportive advice.

Our Child Law Solicitors are based at both of our offices and their vast experience makes them an integral part of our team of Family Solicitors in Stockport & in Manchester.

With offices in Stockport (Heaton Moor) & Manchester (Burnage), our expert family solicitors are easily accessible.  We represent clients not only locally and throughout Stockport, Cheshire, Lancashire & Manchester but also across England and Wales. You can count on us to help and guide you whatever your challenge or circumstance.

Need some professional advice?

Do you have any issues that you are worried about? Contact our professional team for a free, no-obligation informal discussion, where we can discuss your particular requirements in greater detail.

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