Putting children and young people first in the family courts



Your child’s needs – the Cafcass Parenting Plan


The Parenting Plan is a written plan worked out between parents after they separate and it covers the practical issues of parenting.

The Plan can help clarify the arrangements you need to put in place to care for your children after separation, without having to go to court. It can help you in dealings with your children's other parent or carer, and it asks parents to put the best interests of their child first. There are many benefits of making a Parenting Plan;

  • it will help everyone involved know what is expected of them;
  • it acts as a valuable reference to go back to; and
  • it sets out practical decisions about the children, such as living arrangements, education and health care.

Read how the Parenting Plan helped Mark and his ex-wife make agreements on their children’s future without having to return to court.

Parenting Plan




You can start your Parenting Plan online today. You can also order your free copy to complete offline if you prefer. 




Please note: we are changing our warehouse supplier and publications will not be available to order for a short while. For any urgent orders please contact [email protected]


If you do go to court in the future, it is likely that judges will expect you to have started a Parenting Plan.

You can use this Summary of Progress to write down which areas you have agreed on, and which areas you might need help with from a court. This is the time to think again about whether court is the best route, or whether there are other better options.


Free support service for parents in Greater Manchester, Durham, Teesside North Yorkshire and York


Cafcass is offering a free support service to separated parents in Greater Manchester, North Yorkshire, Durham Teesside and York.  A Cafcass professional will help you and your ex-partner make arrangements for your children, without the need to apply to the family court.  Find out about the free service.


Further Parenting Plan links


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