November 11, 2021

Top tips for agreeing on child arrangements over the Christmas period

The big question for separated parents this time of year is who should the children spend Christmas with? For those who are co-parenting or separated parents, Christmas can be stressful and full of concerns. It is important that the children get to spend quality time with both parents over Christmas.

How should Christmas arrangements be divided?

There is no right or wrong answer. 

It is up to the parents to decide how Christmas should be divided. It is common for parents to alternate arrangements each year so that on one year the children would spend Christmas Eve to Boxing Day morning with Mum, for example, going to Dad on Boxing Day, and then the next year spend Christmas Eve to Boxing Day with Dad, going to Mum on Boxing Day morning. This allows the children to spend quality time with each parent and will often mean the children will have two Christmas’ every year.

This is not right for all and some parents split Christmas Day with a handover taking place early afternoon or before lunch. Maybe not the best arrangement unless you live close to each other to avoid travel time for parents and children alike, if you do not live close to each other this can mean that the children spend most of Christmas Day travelling. 

There are lots of other factors which should be taken into account including any work arrangements and travelling where separated parents live far apart. Therefore, reaching an agreement between yourselves in an amicable way ensures that any arrangements are suitable for both parents and most importantly the children.

Top tips from Holmes & Hills Family Law experts

  1. Be open minded and ready to compromise. 
  2. Communication is key – try to have discussions early with the other parent to allow for time to resolve any issues which may arise.
  3. Consider what is in the best interests of the children.  If the children express any wishes they have around Christmas contact, listen to your children, however, do not put your children under pressure to choose between each parent.
  4. Set out any agreement in writing.  This will allow you to refer back to the agreement if there are any issues.
  5. Most importantly, if you reach an agreement, stick to it!

Hopefully, you will be able to agree on Christmas arrangements in an amicable way.  If you are unable to reach an agreement, our specialist family law solicitors can help you negotiate an agreement and advise you further.  At Holmes & Hills Solicitors, we offer an initial fixed fee consultation with a specialist family solicitor for £125 plus VAT.  If you would like to book an appointment, please contact a member of the family team on 01206 593933 who will be able to arrange an appointment for you.

What is the first step to getting advice?

Call us on 01206 593933 today to speak with one of our family law specialists.
Or send an email.

Key Contact

Jade Mercer

Trainee Solicitor

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