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Q&A with Christina Blacklaws, Director of family law at Co operative legal services - ANSWERS BACK

(71 Posts)
RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 19-Sep-12 11:35:06

We're running a Q&A this week  with Christina Blacklaws, Director of Family Law at The Co-operative Legal Services. She's going to be taking  your questions and offering advice on all legal issues that affect the family, such as breaking up, getting together, children, financial issues and domestic abuse.
Christina has over 20 years experience in all aspects of family law. Prior to The Co-operative Legal Services, she founded and managed the largest specialist family law practice in London. She qualified as a solicitor in 1991 and is a higher rights advocate and solicitor specialising in complex child care cases. She is a Law Society Council member, Chair of the Society's Legal Affairs and Policy Board and Chief Assessor of the Children Panel.
Post your questions to Christina before the end of Tuesday 25 September and we'll link to the archived Q&A from this thread on 4 October.

This Q&A is sponsored by The Co-operative Legal Services

NiniLegsInTheAir Wed 19-Sep-12 11:44:11

How do we put our questions to Christina?

crackcrackcrak Wed 19-Sep-12 11:59:48

Yes how? I have an urgent one please

olgaga Wed 19-Sep-12 12:19:11

I think you should keep this at the top of "Legal Matters" so that as many people as possible see it!

OhNoMyFoot Wed 19-Sep-12 12:20:37

Thanks for this as I have one I have been pondering.

What is the best way to sort out a will when one person has children from a previous relationship? Only asset is really going to be the joint (mortgaged) house, thinking of all the various scenarios, if it makes a difference the older children are adults, the second family ones are dependent.


Pinkforever Wed 19-Sep-12 13:03:24

Yes I have one-I am a sahm. Our mortgage is in dh's name and he pays all the bills/food etc. Would I be entitled to half the proceeds of house if we divorced? also if I can ask another question-would I be able to stay in the home-we have dcs-and would he have to continue to pay the mortgage?

I am in scotland btw.Thanks.

Fifi782005 Wed 19-Sep-12 13:56:05

Hi there ,
I have a question , myself and my partner (still together) are respondents to a court application for paternal grandmothers request to see our son which we oppose , no relationship to protect as never met and we as adults have no contact for a number of years . Long story short due partners own abusive childhood cafcass have reccomended only indirect contact until our son maybe of an age to possibly want to pursue a relationship. Mil not happy with outcome so going to final directions hearing !
This is having a considerable affect on our home life and would like to know if there is anyway to prevent further applications being made to protect our sons childhood being dragged through the courts ?

We are united in our desision but feel we have no rights as parents and have been told by our cafcass officer that she couldn't challenge a number of the statements we put to her regarding our sons upbringing and welfare.
We have no legal representation and have difficulty finding information as these cases are usually where the parents have seperated . Any advice in this area would be gratefully recieved
Thank you for your time

MrsjREwing Wed 19-Sep-12 14:15:46

How does my dd go about getting support from her Father towards Uni fee's?

When is the best time to apply to court and how much percentage of his income could she expect?

I couldn't get it on court order at final hearing, was told his circumstances may change. No idea where he is living, he has no contact.

MOSagain Wed 19-Sep-12 14:18:49

fantastic! The regular family lawyers can take a few days off wink

babybarrister Wed 19-Sep-12 17:00:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MOSagain Wed 19-Sep-12 17:14:55

Good point babybarrister, I had thought advertising wasn't allowed on MN wink

BoyMeetsWorld Wed 19-Sep-12 17:24:06

My main question's already been asked i.e how a Will works mainly involving a shared mortgage with dependent from previous relationship. In our case, however, also subsequent DCs from joint relationship. DH now pays mortgage payments however i paid more than half the original deposit.

Also...regarding ExP and father of child. Currently has LO (4 years old) 2 days pw with one overnight. Will go to alternative nights from school age. ExP stated wants more access to LO. Actually not HIM who wants this but paternal grandma. She lives v close to him and the majority of time LO is at dads he's actually with her instead. We live over 2 hours away and ExP works off hours / days - all days except Sun & Mon, from 7am-8pm. What would they be granted if it ever came to it? Is alt weekends plus shared holidays (stays getting longer as LO gets older, currently having 7 days max in hols) reasonable?

Many thanks!

olgaga Wed 19-Sep-12 17:28:13

Maybe they responded to this:

I think it's a marvellous idea, and most people who come here for advice and give advice will find it interesting and useful. Alternatively, they can enjoy the day off! grin

Mellower Wed 19-Sep-12 17:37:18

I have one:
I am in Scotland

If and man is living with his girlfriend and her children are in Care due to him and misgivings over voilence/abuse and drugs, then why is it not appropriate for his conditions living with this family to be brought into consideration when going to Court for access to his own children?

Or is my Solicitor missing something here?

I would have thought it would be vital to know his circumstances with one family before making a decision about his own children, no matter how much he claims he has changed and just how much input does a 12 year old child have into the final decision?

Thank you smile

thank you.

13YearsOn Wed 19-Sep-12 17:46:12

I wish to leave my partner due to emotional and financial abuse and him being controlling. We have a 2 year old DD.

He owns the house and pays the mortgage and most bills. I am a SAHM which we both agreed on.

I have no money of my own. I will go back to work but may have to just walk out with DD at sometime soon.

We can stay with family but not for long.

It will be nasty and he will fight fir custody. Does he have to provide a roof over our heads or just pay maintenance for DD?

LadySybildeChocolate Wed 19-Sep-12 18:19:55

Hi smile

I need to get a REMO order, but I can't afford a solicitor to sort this out. Is is something that I can do myself? There's no original court order in place and the non-resident parent is in the Irish Republic.

Thank you.

ThinThinker Wed 19-Sep-12 18:57:17

i want my dh to have PR of my ds (previous relationship)
he has PR of our dd (child of marriage)
he has lived with ds (4) for 3 years now
ex has fortnightly contact only
i wish it to be 3 ways, not to remove it from ex, just to add dh,
ex says no, what do i need to do?

Numbthumbs Wed 19-Sep-12 19:29:38

I am a SAHM and not married to my partner yet. We have a young DD and i am pregnant with our 2nd DC. Our mortgage and all bills are in joint names as i was earning the most before having DC's.
If we split (hopefully this will never happen but worth thinking about) what happens to custody of the children? Do i automatically get it because i am the primary caregiver or does he because he earns the money?


Bintang Wed 19-Sep-12 21:23:47

If a married couple separate/divorce, do they have to re-do their wills, even if all beneficiaries will remain the same? (we're in England)

nailak Wed 19-Sep-12 22:09:51

what is the evidence needed to charge someone for breaking an injunction?

if someone breaks an injunction and says the other person invited them to visit what is the procedure?

alto1 Wed 19-Sep-12 22:11:56

My elderly mother moved in with us three years ago. She contributed nothing to the house purchase but she pays a small contribution towards bills.

We get along fairly well now, after a rocky start but we have no formal agreement. Should we have? I looked online and on the websites of various old age charities for guidance on the legalities of our situation but I didn't find anything suitable.

I'm aware that she has no security of tenure and I have no protection if she turns on me, or becomes paranoid (as her father did towards her).

I'd be grateful if you could point me to any guidance.

Thanks in advance

lolo99 Wed 19-Sep-12 22:45:43

the father of the child I am carrying has emailed me (no face to face contact wanted by him) to say he is refusing any contact and will hopefully be moving abroad soon. will the csa still be able to help me get child support payments? This will be why he is opting to work abroad asap. I am worried that I will have no address either for them to find him as I never even met his mum in the 6 months we were dating. In a search online, I found his new employer ( a job he started when I was with him) and he is on their website as an employee but if he leaves for a new job as he says, then that address (work) won't be valid either. I don't know what I need to do or where I stand?

mum21boy Wed 19-Sep-12 22:53:34

My husband has dual citizenship....IF we were to divorce how do I prevent him from taking our two dc abroad back to his home country? And what rights do I have re custody? I'm classified as the primary career but earn less than he does.

If we have differing views on our wills would it make sense for me to make my own one? Especially on matters concerning our can I guarantee that mine precedes his? If that is possible at all.

And if I won the lottery whilst married and we were to split does that mean he gets rights to that win? I understand that everything after a marriage is usually split fifty fifty?

combinearvester Wed 19-Sep-12 23:09:20

Do fathers without PR have any right to any information on their (non-resident) child? E.g. from school, doctors etc?

RachelMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 19-Sep-12 23:25:30


How do we put our questions to Christina?

So sorry I just spotted this - post your questions on this thread and we'll be sending 20 questions over to Christina next week. I've amended the opening post to make this clearer and apologise if there was any confusion.

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