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Can my child choose to live with me?

When parents divorce and go to live in separate places, children sometimes have a preference of who they’d like to live with.

They may want to share their time between both parents or they may want to live with one over the other. In some cases, courts can take this into account when deciding where the children should live.

A welfare checklist is used by the court when considering what will happen to the child upon the divorce of their parents. The first factor on this checklist says that the court will have regard to “the ascertainable wishes and feelings of the child concerned (considered in the light of his or her age and understanding)”.

There is no specific age when a child can make their own decision on who to live with. The court can decide to take into account what the child is saying when they make their order, but they can just as easily dismiss the child’s wishes if they believe that the wishes are not in the child’s best interests. Austin Kemp specialise in advising parents throughout the entire process of deciding child arrangements. During this difficult time it’s essential to get the right legal advice from an experienced solicitor.

For more information on this subject please visit our Legal Library.


Contact us to see how we can help you with divorce and child arrangements

For more information call our team on 0845 862 5001 or email

We offer a nationwide service. We have client meeting office facilities available, in order to have face-to-face client meetings / conferences as and when required in:

Leeds Office: Princes Exchange, Princes Square, Leeds, LS1 4HY

Wakefield Office: Market Walk, Wakefield, WF1 1QR

Halifax Office: Old Lane, Halifax, HX3 5WP

Huddersfield Office: Northumberland Street Huddersfield, HD1 1RL

Coventry Office: Warwick Road, Coventry, CV1 2DY

Canary Wharf Office: 25 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5LB

Please contact us for more details.

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