COVID 19 – update for children contact arrangements

Are you worried about the recent COVID-19 Government briefing and confused in respect of what this now means for childcare arrangements in separated families. Please don’t be.

Whilst Mr Johnson suggested restrictions would mean children couldn’t travel between households this is WRONG. The rules have NOT changed for separated families and contact should continue as ordered or as per usual arrangements.

With half term approaching advice has been sought upon arrangements for parents who live abroad and may be expecting contact at half term.

The Department for Transport (via the Ministry of Justice) has now clarified the guidance where either a child or a parent has returned to the UK from a restricted country and is subject to a fourteen day period of self-isolation:

i) A parent who accompanies a child on their return from a restricted country to the UK can leave self-isolation to handover the child to the other parent as part of contact arrangements.

ii) A child who is already in the UK can visit or stay with a parent who is in self-isolation, assuming that no other restrictions are breached (such as the rule of six) and subject to (iii) below.

iii) A parent visiting their child in the UK from a restricted country would not be exempt from self-isolation simply because they were in the UK to spend time with their child; that parent is not permitted to leave their address with the child for any reason (to include any recreational activities) other than to facilitate handover for the entire fourteen day period. In other words, the isolating parent and the child must spend their time together at the address at which the parent is in isolation.

I hope that this is clear but if you have any concerns please give me a call or email.

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