Family & Divorce

Co-parenting, separated families, and quarantine in the Coronavirus pandemic

It goes without saying that the COVID-19 pandemic has presented challenges for us all in every aspect of our lives.

There is no doubt that this uncertain time will be particularly stressful for separated parents and blended families trying to work through the difficulties our community is facing at the moment.

The Family Law Section of the Law Council of Australia has formulated a “Top Ten Guide for Separated Parents during Covid19“, which is a collection of useful tips for any separated parent needing a little guidance. You can find the guide here.

The common thread of these ten tips is communication with the other parent as to all aspects of children’s care in this uncertain time. Now more than ever, communication is key to getting through these troubled times and supporting children who may be feeling scared and anxious.

The Family Law Section also recommends being adaptable in relation to things like schooling, extra-curricular activities and handovers which will all be impacted by the new guidelines about quarantine, self-isolation and social distancing.

If it’s possible, we recommend having a discussion with your co-parent about the challenges you expect you will face. Spending time thinking about the big issues and how you will navigate them will help you keep calm during this global crisis. Some questions we recommend you turn your mind to are:

  1. What will you tell your children about the COVID-19 crisis and how will you answer their questions?
  2. What actions will you take to reduce the risk of the potential spread of the virus across households?
  3. Will you continue sending your kids to school and, if not, how will you share the load of home-schooling?
  4. Where will handovers take place if they can no longer take place at school or in public places?
  5. How will you effectively work from home if your children are home with you?

If a discussion with the other parent is not possible, you can always speak to your lawyer about how they can assist you to work through any issues you may be having. 

At Tindall Gask Bentley, our lawyers are currently working remotely the majority of the time, but we are still contactable by telephone and email and we are ready to assist you through this period of uncertainty.