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[Solved] Chance of 50/50 residency? Experiences?

Eminent Member Registered

Hi all ! First time posting here !

Any advice/ experience with successfully getting 50/50 residency? My boy is 4 years old and until now I’ve seen him 1 day every other week . Our court order is for one day / overnight every weekend but I requested to my ex I reduce it to once a fortnight as he’s been getting upset coming to see me . My ex has stopped contact again and I’ve applied for an enforcement order but requested 50/50 residency on the c79 application.

My situation is ( being totally honest )
- I work full time 6-6 daily and 6-1 alternate weekends. I would get my partner to do the school runs etc
- I live in a 3 bed rental with 3 adults ( me , gf and gf’s brother ) and 2 children .
- Me and my ex do not get on so I am concerned at how we would communicate such a complex arrangement but I don’t see why I should have to miss out on time with my boy because of this.

My ex is totally against it and her main argument is that she works school hours and is available to pick my son up and take to school every day and says that if I am not actually caring for him then she should have the opportunity to . She also says my accommodation isn’t adequate for a 50/50 arrangement.
She has offered me week contact and alternate weekends from fri eve to sun eve .

Have I got any chance of getting 50/50?

Thanks guys

Topic starter Posted : 15/07/2019 12:30 pm
Illustrious Member

hi C420,

there will be others on here who can better advise you, if they got 50/50.
during my hearings, for me the childrens ages were main factor. like you i work full-time. i do 8-4 mon-fri. i would struggle to do things like school runs, especially as ex has already rejected mid-week overnight stays or sun-mon overnights etc. i have a 3 year old and 5 year old.

you stated that you have asked your ex for contact with your child to be reduced, as he gets upset/missing mum. these kind of things will not go in your favor. as your ex will tell court that you asked for reduced contact, but now you want 50/50? I will sit tight and wait for kids to reach age where they go to school on their own. then i will have better chance of getting 50/50. I think you should do the same.

Posted : 15/07/2019 11:34 pm
C420 and C420 reacted
Honorable Member Registered

Hello C420,

I cannot comment on your chances of getting 50/50 residency as I do not have enough experience and knowledge. All cases that go before a court are individual and are treated as such.

If there are no safeguarding or welfare issues I believe a Court Order mostly stipulates at that age of a child the father can have access alternate weekends from Friday to Sunday and a midweek visit. This is what your Ex is offering you. I would consider carefully her offer which I think is reasonable.

I do not understand when you have a Court Order why you have reduced your hours for contact with your child from one day a week to one day a fortnight and then go on to say you have requested 50/50 residency. If one day a week is difficult for you, how would you cope with 50/50 residency?

I appreciate your work commitments. I ask if alternate weekends from Friday to Sunday when you are not working on that weekend, plus a midweek visit for tea would be more manageable for you?

You also state that you, quote, "requested to my ex I reduce it to once a fortnight as he's been getting upset coming to see me." Why do you think he has been getting upset?

Unfortunately for fathers to gain access to their child/ren it appears to me to be a progressive step by step approach to the courts made at appropriate times if access is to be increased, unless of course, there were any safeguarding and/or welfare issues which would be taken very seriously and looked into in depth by the court.

My personal opinion would be to think carefully what you, yourself can manage and keep on good terms with your ex and negotiate with her.

Posted : 16/07/2019 2:27 am
C420 and C420 reacted
Illustrious Member

i agree with MotherofaFather. better not to apply for 50/50 right now. the mother will just tell the court that you have already asked for reduced contact with your child, because you cant handle him staying more often (you will disagree with this for sure, but this is what she will most likely state, and court will be gullible and believe that to be true). then case gets thrown out. a very likely scenario.

Posted : 17/07/2019 12:29 am
C420 and C420 reacted
Illustrious Member Registered

Hi there

I’ve got to be honest... your work commitments, lack of accommodation, the fact that you don’t communicate with your ex, that you reduced your ordered contact and the fact that your ex objects to the changes, doesn’t look too favourable for you.

Like MotherofaFather, I wonder if the alternate weekends and weekly midweek visit that’s been offered, wouldn’t be more compatible with your current situation.

Most enforcement applications end up becoming variations of the existing order, this may be an opportunity to get your existing order more tailored to your needs, perhaps you can ask for a 50/50 share of all holidays as a compromise.

Best. Of luck

Posted : 19/07/2019 2:17 pm
C420 and C420 reacted
Eminent Member Registered

Thank you for your reply .
I understand what everyone is saying and will need to rethink my requests .

I’m your experience from on here etc how often is a 50:50 arrangement awarded at a final hearing ( as my ex will certainly not agree unless overruled my a judge ) ?

The dads who have achieved 50:50 what were their circumstances? I.e working part time etc? Just trying to get an understanding as to what I would need to change to enable me to stand a chance at getting 50:50

Thanks again

Topic starter Posted : 20/07/2019 5:53 pm
Estimable Member Registered

Hi there,
I took my son's mother to Court 5 years ago to increase the amount of time he and I spent together (she was only allowing one day a week - which she described at the time as "very generous"). When making the application, I had to give serious consideration to how much time I wanted, and how much was realistic -which are not always the same thing, when work etc are factored in.
As I was self-employed and could work flexibly, I was able to go for the standard arrangement of every other weekend (Friday to Monday) and a midweek overnight. I was also able to go for and commit to my son being with me for half of all school holidays. Schools generally get around 90 days holidays each academic year (when you add up all the half terms and end of terms and the weekends attached to them - including the bumper 6 weeks long Summer holidays), so that works out at 45 days holidays with each parent. I don't know what your Leave entitlement is - if you get 45 days each year, then going for half the holidays is realistic.
Maybe you could go for a 'standard' arrangement, with an incremental increase in time with your son each year until you get to that 50:50 arrangement you would like, which might give you the chance to see how this would realistically work, particular if your work becomes more flexible, and you are able to provide a room for your son as he gets he gets older and would want one.

Posted : 21/07/2019 2:02 am
Illustrious Member

have a read of this:

The recent case of M(A Child) [2014]EWCA Civ 1755 gives guidance as to the likelihood of shared care arrangements being Ordered by the Court after the Children and Families Act has come into force. This case involved a Tanzanian couple who lived in London. The dad had older children from a previous relationship, two of whom were at university. The application related to their son aged 5½ years. Dad applied to the Court for the son to live with him permanently, which was responded to by the mother taking her son to Newcastle to live there permanently with him. She did so without the consent of dad or the Court. The distance between the two homes posed problems for a shared care arrangement. The trial judge dealt with this by ordering a shared care arrangement dependent upon the mother’s agreement to return to live in London yet he did not expressly make it a condition of the Order that the mother return.

On appeal the Judge commented:

“It is still the case that 50/50 shared care arrangements between parents are comparatively rare in private law children cases. Research shows that a number of factors have to be in place, practical matters such as the close geographical proximity, but, above all, the couple have to be on reasonable or good terms so that the to and fro of every day life for a child is accommodated without undue emotional fall out.

There is no longer any need, because of the change in legislation, to impose a shared order under section 8. Both parents have equal status. So a division of time 50/50 will remain, in my view, a rare order and only to be contemplated where there is some confidence that it will not work to the disadvantage of the child, albeit that the aim is to give good quality and substantial time with each parent.”

Many dads in particular will no doubt think this bad news but a recent study of 200 cases concluded during 2011 has found that dads are treated fairly through the family Court and are “overwhelmingly” successful in obtaining Court Orders that confirm periods of time their children are to spend with them. Historically these Orders were access or contact orders and are now since Children and Families Act called child arrangement orders. The study, conducted by the University of Warwick and University of Reading and funded by the Nuffield Foundation concludes:- “there was actually no indication of any bias towards mothers over fathers by the courts”.

Posted : 21/07/2019 11:04 pm

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