Co-parenting

The child’s matters will be arranged in the same way regardless of whether the parents were a married couple or cohabiting partners.

Co-parenting and agreements on the child’s matters

A child’s ability to cope with the changes and losses caused by the parents’ divorce critically depends on the parents’ ability to work out their disagreements. If the parents learn to have a positive attitude towards each other and work together to arrange the child’s matters, this will protect the child and help them to maintain a close relationship with both parents. If the parents are unable to work together and spend their time arguing, the child is very likely to feel very conflicted and stressed out. If the parents are unable to cooperate and cannot find a way to work together, they should seek help as soon as possible.

The child’s matters will be arranged in the same way regardless of whether the parents were a married couple or cohabiting partners. The parents of minors must reach an agreement on child custody, the child’s residence, right of access and maintenance.

The parents of minors must reach an agreement on child custody, the child’s residence, right of access and maintenance. The child welfare officer can help the parents to draw up agreements and make sure these are in the best interests of the children. An agreement negotiated and confirmed with the help of a child welfare officer is legally as binding as a court decision. Child welfare officers also assess what is in the child’s best interests on the same basis as a court would.

If the parents are unable to agree on the child’s matters on their own or with the help of a child welfare officer, they shall be decided by a court. To investigate the matter, the court may ask social services for additional information that is based on social work expertise and that would otherwise be difficult for the court to obtain. This is called a report on the family’s situation by social welfare authorities. 

A divorce or separation is always a psychosocial process, and processing it is as important as taking care of the practical matters.