Separation To Do List: Child Issues


Child Issues after Separation


How you keep your children happy, healthy and safe after your marriage, opposite sex or same sex de facto relationship has broken up and what you need to do to achieve that, will be one of the first things on your mind. 

If you have children and you are separated, or you are thinking about separating, then issues relating to your children will be one of the most important things you need to take care of.  When you do these things can also be very important.

The child issues you will need to work through are not limited to how you talk to the children, what you and your former husband/wife/partner say to the children, or what arrangements you make for their care. 

If the children will be living with you, then there are documents and items you will need to make sure you keep with you.

Our checklist, giving you an easy to follow to do list will be invaluable to you.

Child Issues To Do List after Separation


Child related Issues to think about, either in preparation for separation, or after you have separated include:

  • Discuss how to tell your children about your separation: together or separately; what to say.

  • Where your children will live and who will take care of them.

  • How much time your children will spend with each parent.

  • How you tell your extended family members and friends about your separation and what you say.

  • Arrangements for your children to continue their usual activities.

  • When your children will spend time with their extended family - grandparents, cousins etc.

  • Discuss how to co-parent in the future, to cause least disruption and distress to your children.

  • Let the school know of your separation and the new contact details for both parents.

  • Let the teachers know of your separation.  Ask them to tell you if they notice any behavioural issues in your child.

  • Safeguard the child’s passport if the other parent may take them overseas without consent.

  • Make sure you keep, or arrange to collect all the important items you’ll need or want to keep, or which may be important to your child and assist in making them comfortable like:
    • Children’s clothes and personal items.  Don’t forget the child’s clothes, shoes, bathroom and similar items.
    • Any Medication the child takes as well as any prescriptions.
    • School uniforms, books and similar items.
    • If your child participates in any sporting or extracurricular activities you’ll need the clothing they wear for it as well as any equipment used.
    • Your child’s favourite toys or any comforters your child likes to use.
    • Important documents about your child like Birth certificates, Medical, Immunisation and other Health records, School reports and records.
    • Any baby or childhood item of significance (eg. lock of hair, foot or hand prints, scans etc).
    • Photographs.
    • Any documents you might want to use during any parenting dispute.  This may involve printing off or forwarding emails and considering what information is stored on any home computer, laptop, ipad etc. 

You may also find the following checklists assist you:


Separation: More Information


You can read our fact sheet The Stages of Separation: How it will affect you & your former partner to assist you understand what you or your partner are going through.

An excellent starting point after separation is our fact sheet Separation: What you need to know & where to get free help.

You should also read our fact sheet How does Separation & Relationship Breakdown affect my Will, family after your death, Superannuation & Life Insurance.

If you own houses, buildings or land with your former partner then you can read how that is affected in our fact sheet How does Separation & Relationship Breakdown affect Jointly Owned Property.

You must know what time limits might apply to you which are explained in our fact sheet Separation time limits after Relationship Breakdown.


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Content By:
Michelle Beatty, Senior Lawyer
Virtual Legal

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