COVID-19: Guidance on child contact arrangements

Date: 9th April 2020
Category: Family Environment and Alternative Care


Lord Carloway, the most senior judge in Scotland, has issued guidance on parental contact and family contact orders.

The guidance acknowledges that many people feel worried about Coronavirus and the health of their children, extended family and themselves. It states people are expected to act sensibly, safely and in line with Scottish Government and UK Government advice, noting that UK Government guidance contains an exception to the general requirement to “stay home” for separated families in order to facilitate contact with both parents. 

Key points in Lord Carloway’s guidance include:

  • If you and your partner live in separate homes but take turns to look after your children, you can continue to do this.
  • If there is a court order or formal agreement in place, you should try to stick to the arrangements it sets out unless both people with parental responsibilities and rights agree to vary it.
  • If you have a more informal arrangement with your partner or ex-partner, you’ll need to discuss what’s best for your children.
  • If it's not possible to keep face to face contact you should try and maintain regular contact virtually using Face Time, WhatsApp, Skype or other means.

The full guidance can be found here.