Family and Matrimonial Partner Ivan Cheong comments in the Straits Times article titled "Coronavirus: Divorced couples face child access and maintenance issues during circuit breaker period"

Family and Matrimonial Partner Ivan Cheong comments in the Straits Times article titled "Coronavirus: Divorced couples face child access and maintenance issues during circuit breaker period"
20 Apr 2020

Eversheds Harry Elias Family and Matrimonial Partner Ivan Cheong comments in the Straits Times article titled "Coronavirus: Divorced couples face child access and maintenance issues during circuit breaker period". The article was first published on 19 April 2020.

Coronavirus: Divorced couples face child access and maintenance issues during circuit breaker period

SINGAPORE- One divorced father said he was anxious that he would not be able to see his children again, even after the circuit breaker period ends. His ex-wife has denied him child access during this time. 

Another divorced father who has lost his job amid the coronavirus outbreak, worries that he will not be able to pay the monthly maintenance amount and be taken to court by ex-wife. 

While Ministry of Health (MOH) guidelines state that access arrangements are allowed to continue, such as if children take turns to live with either parent, the ministry also said to "keep changes to a minimum, where possible, to lower the risk of transmission across different households".

In particular, for cases where ex-spouses have an acrimonious relationship, sorting out child access and maintenance payouts during this period is not clear-cut.

Below is an excerpt from the article which features comments from Ivan:

In response to queries from ST, the Family Justice Courts (FJC) said parents should communicate with each other or through lawyers and work together to find "practical and suitable solutions to access issues", bearing in mind the best interests of the children and the need to comply with government measures. 

The court reminded parents to cooperate with each other and "act sensibly and safely in all arrangements  made for their children".

"Other couples facing problems include those whose arrangements have been for the ex-spouse to meet the child outside, such as at a cafe, said Mr Ivan Cheong, partner at law firm Eversheds Harry Elias. 

These parents could try more video call contact, with the potential for more physical access with the child after the circuit breaker ends, he said. 

He added that it would be difficult to file applications for access during this period as it was highly unlikely that the courts would qualify them as urgent and essential. "

Full article can be found here.

Source: The Straits Times

Author: 

Goh Yan Han

Theresa Tan, Senior Social Affairs Correspondent

For more information, please contact our Business Development Manager, Ricky Soetikno at rickysoetikno@eversheds-harryelias.com

 

Contact: 

Ivan Cheong

Partner
Family and Divorce
T: 
+65 6361 9341
F: 
+65 6438 0550
E: 
IvanCheong@harryelias.com
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