3. Types of court order

You can apply for a single court order, or a number of them, depending on what you’ve been unable to agree on.

Where your child will live

A ‘residence order’ is used to decide where your child will live, and which parent they’ll live with.

Seeing your child if you don’t live with them

A ‘contact order’ is used to decide when you can see your child, eg:

  • at weekends
  • during school holidays

Your child’s upbringing

A ‘specific issue order’ is used to look at a specific question about how the child is being brought up, eg:

  • what school they go to
  • if they should have a religious education

You can also apply for a ‘prohibited steps order’ to stop the other parent from making a decision about the child’s upbringing.

Who can apply

The child’s mother, father or anyone with parental responsibility can apply for a court order.

Other people, like grandparents, can apply for these court orders, but they’ll need to get permission from the courts first.

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