Coronavirus and children arrangements for contact

Lots of children have parents living in two separate households and some of these children will travel between the two to spend time with each parent. With all the current public health warnings and guidance in place, some people may say this is a good reason to suspend contact.

To make matters worse, on 24 March 2020 Senior Cabinet Minister Michael Gove gave an interview on GMB saying “children under 18 should stay in the household that they are currently in, we should not have children moving between households”. He suggested contact shall take place by social media! Fortunately he was challenged and later corrected himself in a tweet saying “to confirm – while children should not normally be moving between households, we recognise that this may be necessary when children who are under 18 move between separated parents” he went on to say “this is permissible and has been made clear in the guidance”.

A difficult party may use Mr Gove’s comments to suspend contact, leaving the children and the other parent in distress. Others may be worried for the wellbeing of their children and genuinely concerned when allowing their children to leave their home. Some contact arrangements may be taking place in the community, whilst others may involve a third party in handover or supervision.

If your contact has been suspended or you are worried for the wellbeing of your children or you are worried about breaching a court order, get in touch with us and we will guide you through this difficult process.

Always ensure you follow the public health guidance and observe caution.

  • If you have experienced symptoms or have been exposed to someone who has, do not go out during the incubation period which is 14 days
  • Tell the other parent if you have been exposed to someone with Covid 19 symptoms. You might be able to agree to make up sessions at a later stage
  • Do not take children to public places but if this is necessary because contact may be taking place in the community, avoid crowded places and exercise social distancing, staying over 2 metres apart from others
  • Avoid public transport if possible
  • Keep a copy of your agreement or your court order with you

Please call us for a consultation over the phone, skype or Zoom.

Contact our office in Bromley today to arrange an appointment with a family law solicitor on 020 8290 7992. For our Surrey team call on 01372 750100, for Sevenoaks the number is 01732 457575 and for central London please call 020 7481 2422.