Family Lore Clinic: Will the court separate siblings?

When separating parents cannot agree with whom their children should live, one or other of them will apply to a court for a residence order. Will the court order that one or more of the children reside with one parent, and the other(s) reside with the other parent?

The answer is that it might.

As a general rule, courts prefer not to separate siblings. Accordingly, if the court has decided that one child should reside with a particular parent, then it will normally follow that the other children should also reside with that parent.

However, the courts will separate siblings if they consider that such an arrangement is in the best interests of the children. Such arrangements are relatively rare, but they do occur, for example where one child has expressed a strong wish to reside with one parent, and another child has expressed a strong wish to reside with the other parent.

Obviously, this is a very brief summary of this topic. If you require more details or specific advice, you should consult a specialist family lawyer.