Do these questions sound familiar?
Whether you are in the process of divorce or have merely separated from your partner, the effect of these decisions mandates a change in family life, especially when minor children are involved. The dispute over contact rights between parents usually results in animosity and anxiety going into the holiday and festive season. Parents are now faced with a multitude of questions, like whom their child will spend Christmas and new year with.
The point of departure in these circumstances would be to establish whether there exists a court order which sets out each respective parent’s duties when exercising contact with minor children. Parents are warned to strictly adhere to the provisions of the court order as failure to do so could result in the affected parent approaching a court on an urgent basis to compel a guilty parent accordingly.
In the absence of a court order to this effect, it would be in the best interests of the child and parents to formalise an agreed-upon parenting plan which dictates the rights and responsibilities of each parent respectively. There exist various avenues in this regard, parents may approach the office of the family advocate, Families South Africa (FAMSA) or an attorney to mediate disputes pertaining to contact or maintenance.
It has now become a reality that families can consist of multiple households due to a mother and father not residing together and it may thus become necessary for parents to employ the services of a neutral third party to navigate this new family dynamic.
The family law department at Phatshoane Henney Attorneys is equipped with competent experts who can assist families in ensuring a smooth transition tailored to your needs.
With a proper parenting plan in place and caring experts on your side, the only question you need to answer during the Holidays must be “Are you ready?”.
Disclaimer: This article is the personal opinion/view of the author(s) and is not necessarily that of the firm. The content is provided for information only and should not be seen as an exact or complete exposition of the law. Accordingly, no reliance should be placed on the content for any reason whatsoever and no action should be taken on the basis thereof unless its application and accuracy have been confirmed by a legal advisor. The firm and author(s) cannot be held liable for any prejudice or damage resulting from action taken on the basis of this content without further written confirmation by the author(s).