Maguire Family Law would like to wish a Happy Jewish New Year which is celebrated this year from sundown on 24 September to nightfall on 26 September 2014.
Religion in Family Law
Religion can often be a common feature of family law, particularly Children Act applications. It is often a feature when looking at the care arrangements for a child so that the child is able to celebrate special religious celebration/holidays with their parents. Further information regarding child arrangement orders, formally residence and contact, which formalise care arrangements for a child can be found here.
Religion can also be the subject of specific issue applications which are applications to ask the court to consider and ultimately decide a specific issue, for example, what religion a child should follow, should a child be circumcised etc.
The paramount issue for the court when determining the care arrangements for a child or deciding the specific issue, e.g. whether a child should follow a particular religion, is what is in the child’s best interests, having consideration to the welfare checklist.
The welfare checklist is as follows:
(a) the ascertainable wishes and feelings of the child concerned (considered in the light of his age and understanding);
(b) his physical, emotional and educational needs;
(c) the likely effect on him of any change in his circumstances;
(d) his age, sex, background and any characteristics of his which the court considers relevant;
(e) any harm which he has suffered or is at risk of suffering;
(f ) how capable each of his parents, and any other person in relation to whom the court considers the question to be relevant, is of meeting his needs;
(g) the range of powers available to the court under this Act in the proceedings in question.
All of these factors must be taken into consideration by CAFCASS if they are appointed, who are the court welfare advisors, and the Judge. No factor has more prevalence than the other and the court’s paramount consideration is the welfare of the child.
How can we help
Issues regarding children are often emotionally charged. The approach of Maguire Family Law is to offer support and recognise the difficult situation that a person is going through but also provide advice free from emotion so that a person’s application is as best prepared as possible.
The solicitors at Maguire Family Law are all specialist family law solicitors and have particular experience in children issues. If any of these issues affect you and you would like to discuss these please email or telephone +44 (0) 1625 544 656