Shared care, ex wanting more days

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  • #6552 Report



    Not sure if anyone’s been in my position.  Had a routine with our children for well over a year (3 nights at dads, 4 at mums each week) a mix of weekdays and weekends so we both get a mix etc… my ex has it that they are entitled to exactly a 50% share of the children…. they have said they will go to court if I don’t agree. I don’t agree to a change as I know it will disrupt the children. They are so happy and settled as it is, so why risk spoiling this for 1 extra night a fortnight…

    obvisouly mediaion first, but if that doesn’t work what do you think the courts opinion would be??

    #6564 Report


    He or you are not “entitled” to 50% split unless you are not in uk. That is a very good split at present tbh. I think the majority of non main resident parents (usually fathers) would love to get that amount of access. If things are working out well not sure why he wants for exact equal split but saying that have you got a geniuine reason why he should not have 50%?

    You state that just for an extra night, why the risk?….I would reverse the question to you on that. I cannot see why an extra night over a two week period would disrupt your kids whatever their ages. There might be circumstances that your post has not revealed but I can only respond to what you have written.

    Hard to say what the court would do but don’t think they would be best pleased seeing this case brought before them if there is no further underlying issue. If there isn’t, on balance, I think the 50% split should be the preferred option. I am no legal expert but having gone through many a family court appearance I would feel the you would need to give a reasoned case as to the case to be rejected. Different matter if he only had the usual every other weekend and the odd other night.

    All of this is depends if there are any other issues at play though.

    #6597 Report


    Hi CAstledad.

    Thanks for taking the time to write such a balanced reply!

    In answer to your reversal question! Over the last year their dad has lived in 5 different places (thru no fault of his really just circumstances) , so the children have had to get used to these places and so haven’t really had the stability they’ve needed  he has since moved again and hopefully this time it’s long term. So I think something needs to stay the same in their life, and the weekly routine is it.

    I know it’s only 2 nights in a fortnight, but he wants this to be every other Wednesday. The girls really like the fact (they have told me) that they know I take them to school Monday/ he collects them and I collect on a Wednesday etc etc  they know exactly where they are in the week.

    My other worry- my eldest sometimes says she doesn’t want to go to his, and I always encourage her to go (she has never not actually gone) and I really worry that if she is told to go more that this will backfire on us (me and my ex) and she will start to resent going.. or their relationship will suffer. She’s a sensitive thing!

    i want them to really enjoy going.

    Anyway  thanks for replying!


    #6634 Report


    Hi Anonymous,

    they are 8 and 5


    #6654 Report


    It’s been a verbal agreement for over a year. It’s flexible on school hols where we both swap weeks etc so we can take them away.

    He pays £35 a week. Which is the recommended amount. He’s self employed so on paper doesn’t earn much. The maintenance doesn’t bother me. It’s such a small amount, I just put it into a savings account for the children.

    #6689 Report


    Fair enough, the moving house issue would be taken into account to a degree.

    I cannot fully put a definitive opinion on this as I do not know the full contact arrangements and the reasons but have the pair of you looked into the possibility that a two times change over mid week, during school time, maybe a bit disruptive? This issue did get brought up in my case.

    Think on balance, to what you have said, the overall arrangements of 4/3 would probably stay the same but as there appears to be no child safety concerns it is far from being a cert. Your eldest would likely to be spoken to by cafcass and they may take a very limited weight into what she says but your eldest may say something entirely different when she is at her fathers.

    I would suggest for you to consider a 50/50 at some point but the kids welfare is absolute priority and if it is genuinely not suitable than don’t go down that route. In regards to child maintenance, as it is there for the upkeep of the kids and if you are just saving all of it I would suggest you discontinue the receiving of it. If he has thought about it being an issue, the stopping of it may just stop any stressful and potentially expensive court case.

    #6695 Report



    Thanks for your response. The midweek change over happens when he takes to school then I collect. So it’s not really that disruptive, and it all ties in with when they get homework and it has to be returned etc.. I would consider changing things in the future, I guess you have to be fairly flexible/open minded as the years go on. Just think right now is def not the right time.

    I suggested not paying the CM to him but he says that’s his responsibility. I even paid it back once when he took the girls away but he transferred it back to me..


    Anonymous – I got a job based around school time that it flexible during school hols. So I never need childcare. He does, as his work is actually mainly school holidays but the business is actually open 7 days a week most of the year. I was a partner so I know it very well.

    #6763 Report


    The two time change over  – he collects on Monday evening and you collect Wednesday. If it is working and everyone is fine then ok, all family circumstances are different but on balance the view tends to be two times change over mid week (school term) is not quite as good as the one…but again all circumstances are different.

    So the 50/50 split request is not a money issue.

    It is one of those coin flip cases if taken to  court, with a marginal favour on the status quo I would have thought. If he does go down that route and due to the overall circumstances it would be somewhat a lesser stressful case than many but saying that it would still be a pain and stressful and best to try to sort it out in mediation.

    If/when it goes to mediation, write down your reasons for the status quo prior to going in.



    #7385 Report


    Just to give a brief update (while I’m in bed worrying at 5:30am)

    we are going to mediation next week, so will see what happens. We both had a chat with our eldest who told us both that she wants the current routine to stay as it is.

    If he does still continue to push for this then he is clearly not listening to his daughter.

    #7411 Report

    The question the court will be asking is : is it in the best interests of the child(ren) to change the current status quo?

    What would the kids gain from a change?  What would they lose from a change?

    Have your answers ready, predict your ex’s possible answers and I think you’ll be just fine.

    #7446 Report


    Mediation review

    i was very impressed with the mediator. She kept conversation on topic and was fair.

    End result- he is having some extra days in school holidays. But term time is staying as it is, she made him very aware of how damaging court would be for all involved. He did want much more… I wanted to leave as is but there you go    compromise!

    She encouraged us to talk positively about the children and stuff we do as parents etc.

    I hope this is the end of it now!

    #7447 Report


    Seems a fair outcome, hopefully no court is required.


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