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Firm foundations: shared care in separated families - building on what works

Report that sets out Gingerbread’s and One Plus One’s understanding of shared care in post-separation families. It examines the impact on children of shared care arrangements, factors that enable it to work successfully and the policy levers that could help encourage shared care.

Views differ considerably on how to promote shared care post-separation and its benefits for children in certain circumstances. While there is broad support for consensual shared care, there are significant concerns about the impact on children of requiring parents in conflict to share care following litigation.

The report examines the Australian experience of establishing a legal presumption of equal parental responsibility and the outcomes for children in litigated cases. It also looks at the financial implications of shared care and the challenges for the welfare benefits system in enabling this as a feasible option for families on low incomes or benefits.

Philippa Newis