Changes in Rules on Child Custody Following Divorce

 

childcustodyspainThe Spanish government has just produced a draft bill that could see important changes in how the custody of children is dealt with by the Courts following a divorce in Spain. The existing law regarding custody of children states that, upon divorce, shared custody should only be considered ‘exceptionally’. This provision is to be removed and  a new article inserted that instead will confer upon the judge the power to decide how the custody of the children is to be exercised.

This is to be carried-out by the judge ordering a report from the ‘Ministerio Fiscal’ (a court official who is present in any court case where children are affected)  and also by considering the views of the parties to the divorce proceedings, the views of the children, any expert views available as well as any other relevant criteria such as age, schooling and how settled the children are in their current location.

Also relevant is the current relationship between the parents  and as between each parent and their children as well as the resolution of each parent to carry-out their parent responsibilities and the possibility of reconciling family and any work responsibilities.

This new measure is accompanied by other provisions that will affect a number of aspects of the post-divorce relationships and responsibilities as follows:

 

Parental Plan

Similar to existing requirements in Autonomous Communities that have authority to implement  their own version of Civil laws – such as Cataluña – any parents now transmitting divorce proceedings must also present a ‘parenting plan’ that will set-out the manner in which the children will be cared for with regard to custody and education and other aspects of the children’s well-being. The judge may approve the plan or order the parents to attend mediation in an attempt to resolve any differences. But the bedrock shall be that the authority to make decisions regarding the children’s upbringing shall be jointly exercised by both parents.

 

Domestic Violence

The law will be changed to prevent any person who has been convicted of domestic violence offences from being awarded custody of the children. Likewise, although there may have been no official complaint, if a court has found that there is well-founded evidence that such a crime has been committed  and the judge agrees in the course of the proceedings that there is well-founded evidence of domestic violence, then custody of the children may be denied to the relevant party.

 

Dissolution of the Family Economic Unit

A major cause of conflict between the parties to a divorce tends to be the resolution of the financial relationship. The new law will make it necessary, upon the initiation of divorce or separation proceedings, to draw-up an inventory of the matrimonial assets so that they may be distributed according to agreements of the parties or order of the court. Once the proceedings have been initiated the couple will no longer be considered to be a single economic unit and so no debts can be accrued by one party on behalf of the other.

 

Family Law Client Testimonials

Client reviews of our family law services, as uploaded by clients directly to the Wufoo survey platform:

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    Colin Wilson, Australia
    Tuesday, October 30, 2018
    Overall it was great. Rosa always answered all questions asked and provided clear, concise and well explained answers.

    When there was a delay in responding she did offer an apology which was appre...ciated. Rosa always instilled a sense of confidence that she knew exactly what was going on, what I was asking, and what the applicable law was.

    When not a Spanish local and dealing with her remotely, this provided great comfort in a sensitive matter.
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    Mohamed kheder, Dublin, Ireland
    Monday, September 24, 2018
    Every thing was great ... Rosa was really helpful and understanding. And I see the value for money was good enough.. of course I would recommend it to any of my friends.

    And I would like to have th...e chance to thank Rosa and the whole company for everything.
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    Wendy Dickson, Marbella
    female
    Tuesday, June 19, 2018
    It was all done very quick. Very good value for money. How easy it all was to communicate via email.
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    Liezl Pulido, Philippines
    female
    Monday, April 23, 2018
    Rosa never stopped working very hard, she went way above what she needed to do...she never gave up on me and always did more than I thought anyone would.

    I am so blessed I got Rosa to help me I co...uldn't have gotten a better lawyer she's the best.

    Thank you Rosa from the bottom of my heart you are a wonderful person, I am so grateful to you.
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    Julie Smith, Torrellano
    female
    Friday, April 20, 2018
    I can't compliment my solicitor enough.

    From our initial meeting right through to my ultimate divorce (with no unpleasant surprises the entire duration of the entire process), he immediately respo...nded to my many enquiries, always had mine and my daughter's best interests at the forefront of any considerations and was well worth every penny of his extremely reasonable fee.

    Excellent value for money, totally approachable and very professional and understanding. I highly recommend him and will continue to retain his services for other matters in the future.
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    David Pratt, Alhaurin del Grande
    Friday, April 13, 2018
    Alvaro gives me confidence that he understands the issue and gives me practical solutions. He works rapidly and efficiently. I would strongly recommend his services.
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    John Burchell, Arroyo De la Miel
    Tuesday, March 20, 2018
    Alvaro was very professional, helpful and friendly. Understood things quickly. Explained things well in English. Very easy to contact at any time.
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    Robert Davies, Mallorca
    Monday, March 12, 2018
    Very supportive and clear on producing a suitable divorce settlement. Efficient, understanding and professional.
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    Adam Clark, Tenerife
    Friday, March 09, 2018
    Oliver was very professional. He explained things very clearly and honestly at all times and in the end we got the best result possible in my particular case.

    Many thanks to him for his high level ...of service.
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    Holly, Lanzarote
    female
    Friday, February 23, 2018
    The divorce process could have been explained more clearly and accurately so that a more realistic time for completion can be attained.
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    Tamara Malcolm, Mallorca
    female
    Tuesday, February 20, 2018
    Rosa was and is extremely knowledgeable and helpful. Her advice was excellent and i will definitely be using her expertise again in the future.
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    Eric Van Der Straeten, Belgium
    Friday, November 17, 2017
    Mr. Sempere Gelardo was a pleasure to work with. This lawyer has an understanding of difficult matters that surpasses most of his colleagues.

    He replied to my demand the next day and in fluent Engl...ish assisted me in the case I presented to him.

    His professionalism, together with a lot of empathy, gave me a feeling of security. The results were of the same high standard.

    I can only thank him and would recommend him to anybody who is in need of legal assistance in the region of Alicante.
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    S Smith, Estepona
    Tuesday, September 12, 2017
    Being English in Spain and fighting a child custody and divorce case here is extremely difficult.

    I originally had an only Spanish speaking lawyer and after 2 years of everything taking ages inclu...ding just responses from my lawyer plus with the language barrier I decided to make the difficult decision to change my lawyer to Alvaro.

    Immediately and quickly Alvaro got an understanding of the case and was able to advise me. I was now able to understand myself what was going on and he worked to a new pace that had previously been lacking and that was needed to win the case.

    Communication and response from Alvaro was always immediate and his recommendations were always correct. He is very professional and approachable person, and a very good lawyer. With his help and guidance I won the case and without any hesitation I would highly recommend Alvaro as a lawyer to anyone.
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    Aaron L, Oregon
    Wednesday, August 02, 2017
    Very satisfied with the service provided. Helen was knowledgeable, helpful and responsive to communication. Will definitely use again.
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    Maya M, Canada
    female
    Monday, July 31, 2017
    My overall experience with Rosa was a positive one.

    Value for the money? Yes.

    In my opinion, Rosa is a very knowledgeable and professional lawyer, who is able to not only understand the situat...ion at hand, but also suggest different approaches and customized solutions for unique, non-standard situations, which was the case with me.

    And for that I am really happy and grateful to have worked with Rosa, and wish her the very best in the future.
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    N. Gardiner, Mijas
    Friday, June 16, 2017
    Rosa was value for money, really easy to deal and very efficient. Highly recommend.
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    D slocombe, Spain
    Friday, May 19, 2017
    Jose is very friendly and understanding. I am very satisfied and I would you use the same lawyer again in the future.
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    KSC, Ireland
    Tuesday, October 18, 2016
    She was very helpful, always happy to assist. I was very satisfied with the service.
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    Elena, Australia
    female
    Tuesday, June 14, 2016
    Rosa was straightforward, friendly, polite and cheap. I was very satisfied and I definitely would use the same lawyer again in the future.
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    Kate Godbehere, Granada
    female
    Thursday, February 25, 2016
    From the outset, Rosa was extremely professional, approachable, efficient and competent. Her level of English is extraordinary, something very much appreciated as it made life easier for me during an ...inherently difficult time.

    Her correspondence was always relevant, detailed, simply and clearly explained and expressed. Rosa was kindly, matter of fact, calm, patient and always reassuring.
    Her pro-active, intelligent, thoughtful and knowledgeable advice helped very much during a particularly delicate and worrying stage of the process.
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    Peter Gural, La Linea
    Thursday, October 08, 2015
    What I liked about this service: Value for money.

    The level of professionalism and excellence in service was not compromised in the reasonably low fee charged for the service.

    All details were... explained in a simple format that an ordinary citizen could understand, sparing the bureaucratic procedure that only lawyers can understand.
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    Elena Todd, Almoradi
    female
    Friday, July 18, 2014
    Our lawyer was very understanding of our situation, and took a lot of time to strategise for the best possible outcome.

    Her passionate performance in court exhibited a heartfelt commitment to our ...case.

    Her fees were very reasonable and she was willing to consider payment terms at difficult times.

    I strongly recommend her and will use her again in the future.
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    Christine B., Spain
    female
    Thursday, July 03, 2014
    Very fast and comprehensive responses to all my queries.

    Always available via email and telephone.

    Very reasonable fees.Extremely helpful and thorough. Polite, perfect English. Absolutely prof...essional.

The Family Home

As far as the family home is concerned, the new law, while not changing the fact that the interests of the child are paramount, will separate the award of the use of the family home from the award of custody. Thus the award of custody will no longer result in award of exclusive use of the family home. The court will take into consideration the needs of the spouse that has more difficulty in finding a new home.

 

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