March 2014; much of it came into force on 22 April 2014.
Child arrangements orders (s.12 CFA 2014)
We don't have contact and residence orders anymore. Instead, the two are brought together and we have “child arrangements orders”. Child arrangements orders are defined as:
“an order regulating the arrangements relating to any of the following:
(a) with whom a child is to live, spend time or otherwise have contact and
(b) when a child is to live, spend time or otherwise have contact with any person.”
Realistically we are still referring to residence and contact which under the old law meant that a Residence order settled with whom the child will live. Such an order may be made in favour of more than one person. If these people are not living together, it may also specify the periods to be spent in each household. An old style Contact order meant the person with whom the child lives (or is to live), is to allow the child to visit or stay with the person named in the order, or for that person and the child to have contact with each other.
For many residence and contact are still odd terms. Many clients prefer and better understand the old concepts of custody and access but these terms went out over 20 years ago. We now have to get used to new terms as the Child Arrangements Programme (CAP) rolls out. If the cap fits....
Call me if you want to know more. 01483 755 609