Sole charge

(21 Posts)
NZmonkey Mon 14-Mar-16 00:22:09

If this was in a parenting order how would you interpret it?

'Each parent is expected to be able, willing and confident to take sole responsibility of Child while she is in their care. If for any reason, this is not the case, the other parent should be notified so other arrangements can be made.'

Does sole responsibility mean the parent can't pop to the shop for 5 minutes and leave the child with a family member or let a family member take the child to the shop while the parent stays home. Or drop the child at a party/play date.

WSM123 Mon 14-Mar-16 00:31:48

That looks familiar/similar. It means "I'm going to be as difficult as possible, while pretending to be mature and if you get an invite somewhere no babysitters allowed on your weekend, but if you ask me to swap I wont because I want to be difficult"
But in reality who would know/care so long as the child is looked after

VelvetCushion Mon 14-Mar-16 00:36:22

It reads, im going to be an asshole and make life very difficult.
Been there confused

iwantanewcar Mon 14-Mar-16 00:59:14

Isnt this parental First refusal? I thought this was quite common (if not worded like that).

anklebitersmum Mon 14-Mar-16 01:18:37

It reads as you must be there.

However as a parent I take sole responsibility for whomever I choose to leave my DC's with when I pop to the shop so I am still effectively solely responsible for my DC's as far as I am concerned. wink

On a brighter note it does also mean that dropping DC back early because she felt poorly or refusing a planned visit on the same basis is effectively squashed.

Your solicitor should be explaining what the options and implications are here.

Bluelilies Mon 14-Mar-16 08:55:52

It's utterly unclear, as it doesn't distinguish arranging for a child to play at a friend's house for 20 minutes after school as you've been held up at work, and going off on holiday for a week during your contact time and leaving them with grandparents.

I'd want to clarify it with something along the lines of "If for any reason either parent is unalbe to care for the child for a period of 24 hours or more...." which would be a bit more reasonable.

Fuzz01 Mon 14-Mar-16 09:01:31

Depends on the situation and the level of access. My ex use to split his access with his DM and go sit in the pub while she has DS. This wasn't acceptable he had other days of no contact to go to the pub. It affected DS badly so i had it written into the order that it was his sole access no one elses but could take DS to visit family of course just not use thek as a baby sitting service. Obviously if he popped to the shop and his DP was there or minded DS until he finished work thats different.

Fuzz01 Mon 14-Mar-16 09:04:49

There should be no reason to have babysitters on access unless at work. If my ex has plans or been invited to event we simply swap the day so ex and DS dont miss out on quality time together. This works for both of us.

Bluelilies Mon 14-Mar-16 09:16:58

I think that does very much depend on your level of access and level of involvement in each other's lives that you're comfortable with fuzz. The way the agreement is worded is also clear that it applies equally to both parents, so the RP would also be forbidden from leaving the child with anyone else without offering the NRP the opportunity to have them.

I don't think it's actually a healthy way to raise children and not necessarily in their best interests to be shunted between homes whenever either of their parents wants a night out. My kids loved having babysitters when they were younger and I wouldn't have wanted to have felt like I needed to ask my ex for permission whenever I wanted a night out. We get on fine, but it's my life and none of his business. And once kids are around 8 or over a grey area starts to emerge between leaving them in someone else's care and leaving them on their own for appropriate lenghts of time - it's not wrong to let them play at the park with a friend at some age, or be home along for a short period, but would it suddenly require permission if there was a stepparent or grandparent present? This grey area will grow huge by the time you have teens.

Fuzz01 Mon 14-Mar-16 09:53:51

We dont particularly have babysitters often even for our other DC My ex has two over nights but in situations such as me being unable to care for DS( labour) i tend to give ex the opportunity first to have DS over my family members. I think it depends on the situation it access is on set certain day then the parent should take responsiblity for that child not family members otherwise how is a relationship suppose to develop? In earlier days when DS was younger, this was a problem and affected him being passed around be different if the level of access was greater.

NZmonkey Mon 14-Mar-16 19:32:19

thanks everyone for the replies
The current order has a right of first refusal clause in it that states
"If either parent is unavailable to care for Child during their scheduled times, the other parent must be notified no less than 48 hours ahead of time so other arrangements can be made"
This has however only ever been a one way street. NRP is expected to notify RP, but on more occasions than can be counted RP has not notified the NRP and just organised their own babysitters.

I was just wondering if the new wording would make it even more strict as it is no longer about being busy (ie working, night out or away) but about every second of every day that the child is with them they must have sole responsibility.

anklebitersmum I think this is what the RP uses as a parent I take sole responsibility for whomever I choose to leave my DC's with
Fuzz01 If my ex has plans or been invited to event we simply swap the day so ex and DS dont miss out on quality time together. this is what has always happened from the NRP to the RP (Non resident parent has 4 nights a fortnight)

Bluelilies I agree it is utterly unclear when we would have to notify and when we wouldnt have to. You also talked about letting children play at the park with a friend etc at the moment that is completely forbidden as there is a clause in the current order that states "Under no circumstances is she to walk or catch public transport on her own." possibly playing at the park may be ok as long as you walked her to the park and then walked her home from the park wink

Fuzz01 Mon 14-Mar-16 21:36:17

I suppose it would depend when the four days were over and if they could be swapped. Seems odd every fortunight surely one weekend one midweek every week would be better?

NZmonkey Mon 14-Mar-16 22:01:09

Fuzz01 yes the set up is every other weekend and one midweek each week which adds to the 4 nights a fortnight. There is talk of getting rid of the midweek stay as RP complains they are too disruptive for her.

Bluelilies Mon 14-Mar-16 23:09:22

Doesn't sound much like a parenting agreement to me. Sounds more like the RP dictating every detail of how the child most be cared for.

If she finds a planned midweek too much hassle she's not exactly going to want to offer an overnight to your DP every time she fancies a night out is she, especially if 48 hours notice is required? So it's effectively all one way with your DP required to ask hey permission for any time she's left in anyone's care.

And how can you set in stone what level of independence a child can have forever more?

I'd try and get it limited to overnights not in the parents care which would be a bit more reasonable.

NZmonkey Mon 14-Mar-16 23:25:20

Bluelillies Sounds more like the RP dictating every detail of how the child most be cared for. this is exactly what the original reads like including things like rest times must be provided for, what can and can not be eaten/ drank, which specific people can care for her etc. No independence is defiantly never going to be allowed. Currently RP is writing down everything her daughter eats, when she sleeps and all behavior so she can prove to the court that mid week stays are too disruptive. It appears to be more about transitioning between homes than anything else but that is not being considered.
The overnights idea is a great idea i will suggest that, it will probably go down like a ton of bricks but it is a better option than anything else so far, thanks

anklebitersmum Tue 15-Mar-16 04:05:50

I think you need to have a big chat with your solicitor as regards this 'sole care' issue and sort out either a middle ground or more specific phrasing which makes it clear this runs both ways now if possible. Don't forget that whether you're NRP or RP you are still a parent and should (in normal circumstances) have equal levels of responsibilty when the DC is in your care regardless of the percentage of time that they are in your home.

The NRP being treated as a second class parent and 'not trusted' is not what these orders are supposed to be about in my experience (both sides of the street in our house btw).

That said, we always try to ensure that whenever humanly possible the 'right' parent is available to parent the 'right' child on days when contact is organised. It's ultimately supposed to be about quality parent time and what is genuinely best the child, not who's most 'in charge'.

NZmonkey Tue 15-Mar-16 04:59:41

anklebitersmum we have already seen the lawyer who said he must attend a parenting through seperation course and then request mediation before anything can really change. Next course is early may and we are booked in. Lawyer said it was best to just find a way to come to an agreement as parents together.
In this case the NRP is definitely not trusted and is definitely the second class parent as you put it and is assumed to be totally irresponsible when it comes to caring for his child.

Horopu Tue 15-Mar-16 06:03:30

When I did the Parenting through Separation course they stressed that the court would not be interested in things like what the child can/can't eat, bedtimes, unless it was a safe guarding issue.

Horopu Tue 15-Mar-16 06:03:31

When I did the Parenting through Separation course they stressed that the court would not be interested in things like what the child can/can't eat, bedtimes, unless it was a safe guarding issue.

NZmonkey Tue 15-Mar-16 06:13:45

Unfortunately the first one didn't go through the cort and was just agreed to and signed to ensure contact happened

iwantanewcar Tue 15-Mar-16 08:45:11

You mention transition. Please do not UNDERESTIMATE the impact to a child of transition. I cannot find on your posts how old your SC is. Transition can impact children very badly no matter how good both parents are and their relationship. Do take that concern seriously.

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