Step Parent Rights Solicitors Sheffield, York & Leeds: Family Law Legal Advice for Stepfamilies & Stepparents
Stepfamilies are becoming increasingly common in modern life. Every family structure is different, we understand that for many, a stepparent can be an important part of a child’s life.
It is therefore important for families who do not fall within the description of a typical nuclear family to understand their legal rights.
Do Stepparents have a right to see their Stepchildren?
In the event that a stepparent separates from a child’s biological mother or father, they do not have an automatic right to see their stepchild. If an agreement cannot be reached between the stepparent and biological parent regarding contact arrangements, the stepparent can apply to the court for a Child Arrangements Order to spend time with the child. When considering the application the court will consider a range of factors to ensure any contact promotes the welfare of the child. An important factor will be the relationship that the stepparent has enjoyed with the child in the past and the bond between them.
Does a Stepparent have Parental Responsibility?
Stepparents do not have parental responsibility. Even if a stepparent is involved in the day-to-day care of the child they are not entitled to make decisions on the child’s behalf. Stepparents can obtain parental responsibility in the following ways:
- Applying to the Court for a Parental Responsibility Order; or
- Entering into a Parental Responsibility Agreement with the consent of all parents with parental responsibility.
If you are a stepparent and require advice about your rights please contact us today.