Child custody

When dealing with the highly emotive subject of child custody – now referred to as the Child Arrangements Programme – it is important that you talk to an experienced family lawyer.

Child Custody is always a sensitive and raw issue, many of our clients come to us after attempting to deal with the issues on their own for far too long. They tell us that they feel a sense of relief to finally talk to someone who understands what they are going through after allowing their concerns and worries about their children to build up.

Parental break-ups are followed by child custody disputes. Children and divorce, both, become a complicated concern for a couple who doesn’t feel able to continue in a marriage. The UK government has defined laws regarding child custody for both parents. The arrangements for child custody can be very difficult to handle when the couple goes through a divorce or a separation. In the majority of cases, the custody of the child is given to the mother, however, the father still gets granted contact rights with the child.

What does Custody in the law mean?

The word ‘custody’ refers to ‘residency’ in the terminology of law. This tells about the location of the child’s residence after the divorce of his/her parents, either the child should be living with the mother or the father.

What does Shared Custody in the law mean?

The term ‘shared custody’ refers to shared parenting or joint custody by, both, mother and father. This kind of custody let both the parents to share the custody by spending equal time with the child and both of them will have equal say in all the matters of the child that directly or indirectly influences the child. If the parents get the issue of custody resolved amicably, it might make it easier for the family to deal with the unfortunate situation, however, if the dispute gets heated then the court decides on which residence arrangements will result in the best of child’s interest.

How is Shared Custody implemented in the United Kingdom?

The concept of shared custody is already famous in the United States of America and in most of the countries of Europe. In the United Kingdom, the development of joint custody arrangements is still slow in progress, however, many organizations have been focusing to escalate the importance of joint custody in the country.

How does Shared Custody benefit the father particularly?

The joint custody significantly differs from the standard contract of custody. The standard contract of custody refers that the child is resident with only the mother or the father, whosoever wins the case of custody. In most cases, the mother is given the legal authority to raise the child with her, however, the father is given specific days of the week (mostly weekends) and sometimes limited hours to spend time with the children.


In line with the Child Arrangements Programme, Betteridges work to avoid conflict and help you resolve the issues through family mediation, whenever possible. Mediation can be quicker, cheaper and lead to better outcomes than going to court and works effectively to establish issues such as parental responsibility, residence and contact when it comes to your child.

Next steps

Our lawyers are not only experienced in all aspects of child law, they are also genuinely caring and sympathetic. At your initial discussion they will be able to:

  • Provide a practical course of action to help you make the right decisions – always with the best interests of your children at heart.
  • Give you realistic expectations, saving you time, money and possible complications further down the line.
  • Make you aware of the common pitfalls surrounding custody of children.
  • Simplify the complex and ever-changing legal terminology.
  • Explain to you what your options are – many of which you may not have been aware of before.
  • Talk you through how a judge would approach your circumstances in court, should you need to go down this route.
  • Cover all the issues to ensure that the agreement you reach provides a solid framework for you and your family in the years to come.

You don’t have to deal with these issues alone. To obtain child custody advice, you can arrange your initial discussion with us today. 

Please do not delay contact us to arrange an informal chat about your situation. Call us now on 01992 505406 (International callers +44 1992 505 406) or complete our Online Enquiry Form and we will soon be in touch. Or email