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How mediation can help separated parents with decision-making

14 July 2021 Family Law Stuart Hunter

When new couples talk about the future it’s often sugar-coated with the illusion of fiction. “We’ll have a big white house with a picket fence, four children, and a dog named Max.” In the early throes of a relationship, it’s easy to agree on everything - baby names, houses, what school to send your child to, even what Netflix series to start next.

But our lives change daily, and the horizon is never an exacting science.

Couples who swore to be together “till death do us part” find themselves drifting apart. Jobs, lives, families change. And then a global pandemic hits that changes everything more than we could ever have predicted.

Right now, we have lots of decisions to make, many of them involving keeping our children safe, and how to navigate this new world. The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted issues that we had perhaps not considered before. How much to tell our kids; how much to hide, who our support bubbles really are and where are they located, where we should live, how we can protect our nearest and dearest. And for separated or divorced parents looking after the welfare of their children in this new world can be even harder if both parties have different views.

In March all Scottish children returned to school full-time and after the summer we are hoping that everyhing is back to normal in our education system. But what if you weren’t ready to send them back? What if your kids had thrived in lockdown? What if they were vulnerable, physically or mentally? What if you lived with grandparents who are shielding?

Has the past year of lockdown made you rethink where you live, and how close you are to family? For many, a pandemic has made them rethink their lifestyle and whether their current location is the right setting for bringing up their children. However it is not as easy as upping sticks if the other parent does not agree.

When divorce or separation happens in a family with children, it’s not as easy to resolve conflicts or disagreements such as this. The earlier you seek advice and an intermediary to manage the issue, the more likely it is that you’ll find a solution. A lawyer can be that mediator. That person who helps negotiate, helps find a resolution, or ultimately, if that fails, helps make the decision.

Whether it is a matter of contact, residence, or even relocation, as accredited specialists in both Family Law and Child Law our solicitors can help clients to find solutions that work for them and their families. Family law disputes can often be difficult and highly emotive, and at Macnabs we are committed to dealing with these cases sensitively, yet tenaciously when necessary.

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