Co-parenting provides flexible family building, and typically involves between two and four adults who want to conceive and parent a child. For example:

  • a single or lesbian woman and a single or gay man
  • a lesbian couple and a single or gay man
  • a lesbian couple and a gay couple
  • a gay couple and a single or lesbian woman

A co-parenting arrangement requires a clear understanding of the law and legal implications, because as a child can only have two legal parents under English law.  It is important to understand the legal status each person in the co-parenting arrangement will have (to include legal parenthood and parental responsibility), or acquire, in respect of the child.

The consistent message of the English Family Court is co-parents should put in place a co-parenting agreement before they conceive a child, to clarify the legal and practical issues in relation to their child.  This Agreement manages the expectations and maps out arrangements for the care and upbringing of the child to reduce emotional, financial, practical and legal difficulties which may develop in the future arising from a change in circumstances. We provide legal advice and support in the event unexpected issues arise.

Co-parenting arrangements can work and afford a life enriching experience for all parties.  These arrangements require expert documented legal advice from the outset.

How we can help

To find out more about our bespoke legal services click here.

We deliver expert timely legal advice on:

  • acquisition of legal parenthood for a child
  • acquisition and exercise of parental responsibility for a child
  • fertility law in the UK and internationally
  • co-parenting law and preparation of a co-parenting agreement
  • legal risk analysis in your situation
  • legal advice and assistance concerning financial provision for a child
  • a dispute about arrangements for a child
  • a relationship breakdown
  • preparation of specialist 'Family Proof' Wills

Click these links to read more about: 

To gain an understanding of wider issues in the development of and current issues surrounding fertility, parenting and family law in the UK and internationally click here to visit our Media and Publications section. 

You can also find out more about assisted conception and family law in the UK in our resource hub.

For further information or assistance please contact Louisa Ghevaert, Partner and Head of the Fertility and Parenting Team at Michelmores, by email or call +44(0)207 7886382.

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