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Separation Agreement

(12 Posts)
lemonwildflower Sat 20-Feb-16 09:30:02

Hi ladies!
Can anyone recommend a cheap but friendly solicitor for Family Law?
I am having to write up a separation agreement with my ex, and I need advice from an expert as he is now demanding to have DD at his place 2 out of 5 weekends (and she is only 3 months old!!) I don't think that is ok, but I need to know what a judge would order if we were to go to court now...

Any advice please??
Any solicitor names please??
Thank you so much x

Fourormore Sat 20-Feb-16 09:58:56

Well a judge would be very unlikely to order full weekends for a 3 month old baby. Little and often is what's recommended at that age.

What level of time do you think would be best?

lemonwildflower Sat 20-Feb-16 11:36:23

I had suggested he come see her once a week. But he is saying that he doesn't want to have to see her either at my house or to have to take her out for a walk.

But I think that she should be at least 1 year old before she starts going to his house for 2 weekends in 5.
It's an hour's drive to his! ( not nice for DD to have to do either...)

Fourormore Sat 20-Feb-16 11:53:29

I don't think once a week is enough, to be fair.

Have you been to mediation? That might help you reach a suitable middle ground.

lemonwildflower Sat 20-Feb-16 12:55:13

No we haven't been there yet.
However, the once a week is all he can do. So that wasn't me being unfair. It's just how often he can do.
What age do you think is old enough for DD to start spending a whole weekend at his house?
Would you say 1yo or before?

Do you know any cases like these that have had to go to court?
Do you know any solicitors?
Thank you!!

Fourormore Sat 20-Feb-16 13:10:22

There isn't a right answer really. If you'd have stayed together, perhaps you would have been happy to leave baby in the care of dad overnight before she was one. After separation, it seems to get clouded.

As a rule of thumb, I think the courts say daytime contact until the child is 1 year old. That daytime contact wouldn't necessarily be at your house. It could be in your local area or he could pick up in the morning, go to his and then return later in the day. I do know solicitors but you're going to need one near you so have a look for family solicitors where you are. It doesn't sound like a particularly complex case.

Mediation really is the best first step. If you can, avoid court, it's the worst place to solve these sorts of things.

DeoGratias Sat 20-Feb-16 16:14:56

Also do bear in mind that unless a court seals an order on divorce your written agreement with him is not really a legally binding thing at all so I wouldn't waste too much time on it and with such a small child who is presumably still breastfeeding things will change so quickly as the child changes, as you go back to full time back (you may already be back) etc.

findyourstrength Sat 20-Feb-16 21:29:59

Yes - thank you. I was told this wouldn't be legal, but it's at least legally binding between us and I can use it as evidence to show what he is breeching (if any).

I haven't considered a mediator, as I wanted to believe we could have sorted this out between us, but I never thought things would have escalated like this - and I think he is now doing a lot of things he wouldn't have usually, just to keep up appearances with his family.

That's reassuring, I have scheduled a call with a local solicitor for Monday to see what they would say about similar cases and judge orders.
I really don't want to go to court, but my ex on Thursday threatened with going to court ... So I want to be prepared for the worst case scenario sad

findyourstrength Sat 20-Feb-16 21:30:24

How much do mediators cost btw?!

kittybiscuits Sun 21-Feb-16 06:59:41

I think around £100 - £150 an hour. Are you breastfeeding?

DeoGratias Sun 21-Feb-16 07:56:44

Most parents reach agreement over child contact between themselves and that even family lawyers will tell you works best. If you end up in the courts you tend to have failed and even if you have a court order it can be hard to enforce it. Mediation can work well but if you can reach agreement without it that's good and what most people do.

FindYourStrength Sun 21-Feb-16 08:41:21

Ok that's great thank you smile
I'm not breastfeeding anymore as my milk stopped due to the stress...

Yes we are trying to reach an agreement between us, but he is coming up with these crazy demands and then out of nowhere threatened to take me to court. So I got a little scared as to what the judge would order of it went that far ...

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