A Specific Issue Order is a type of Court Order that helps to settle a particular dispute about child arrangements after a divorce or separation.
A Specific Issue Order can be made in disputes surrounding the following circumstances:
Specific Issue Orders have an effect on the way in which a parent is able to exercise their Parental Responsibility, and for that reason, they are not made frivolously. A Specific Issue Order normally lasts until the child turns 16, but can be for a set amount of time, or until the child is 18 in limited circumstances.
In addition to parents, stepparents with parental responsibility, and anyone named on a Child Arrangement Order and guardians can apply for a Specific Issue Order. Anyone else wanting to apply for a Specific Issue Order would have to apply for permission from the Court first.
Before you make the application, you, need to attend a Mediation Information Assessment Meeting (MIAM). The exception to this rule is the non-availability of a mediator, or where there has been violence within the relationship. The purpose of mediating is to make one final attempt to resolve matters, before going to Court.
If mediation is unsuccessful, an application to Court is made and the court sets a date for what is referred to as a First Hearing and Dispute Resolution Appointment.
If you are a person with Parental Responsibility, you will receive a copy of the application and be entitled to attend court hearings, have legal representation and make your objections known to the court. If you do not have Parental Responsibility, you will need to ask the court for permission to become a party to the proceedings.
Duncan Lewis is ranked and recommended by the Legal 500 UK Legal Directory for its Family & Matrimonial work – and the Duncan Lewis team includes Advanced Members of the Law Society’s Family Panel, and members of the Law Society Children Panel – so our team is well placed to help you with any specific issue disputes.
We are experts in all aspects of family law relating to children, to include making or opposing an application for a Specific Issue Order. We can draft the application and the necessary statements of evidence and ensure that the evidence is presented to the Court in the best way. For professional legal advice on Specific Issue Orders, please call Duncan Lewis Private Law Children Solicitors, or request a call using our online form.