Helpline welcomes new legislation

Hazel Hedley, from Support 4 Separated Parents (S4SP) Helpline.
Hazel Hedley, from Support 4 Separated Parents (S4SP) Helpline.

A new scheme set up to assist parents going through separation is welcoming new children and families’ legislation which has gone live this week.

With the changes made to legal aid in recent years, and the cost of going to court to sort out disputes over children when parents split, Support 4 Separated Parents (S4SP) Helpline has proved popular since launching three months ago.

The Children and Families Act 2014, makes significant changes to the family justice system particularly in respect of parents who are separating.

In future courts will expect parents who are separating to seek help and advice in reaching solutions for the care of their children without first going to court.

S4SP helpline, which can be reached on 0333 2000722 and is being trialed in Tyne & Wear and Northumberland to assist parents in find routes to settling issues without going to court.

Hazel Hedley, who heads S4SP, said: “Our helpline specifically focuses on giving other routes than court to parents needing to resolve differences. We recommend a whole host of solutions including mediation, and give suggestions for the right provider for each case.

“Court hearings can cause further bad feeling between parents cost a lot of money and it is ultimately the children who get caught in the middle..

“Our service now fits seamlessly with the new legislation, and we welcome it with open arms.”