It can be very complex to decide the lieu de résidence (place of residence) of a child, something previously known in France as le droit de garde (custody rights).

Only 1 in 5 children live with their father, although this trend has been on the increase in recent years.

When you’re ending a marriage or a civil partnership, parental authority is retained jointly by both parents. Who exercises that parental authority has no particular consequence on the rules. Nonetheless, in France the judge may decide to entrust the exercise of parental authority to just one of the parents if this is deemed to be in the best interests of the child.

This the right of a parent who does not have primary custody of a child ( in terms of residence) to take the child away with them ( visiting rights – droit de visite) and to have them sleep at their own home ( accommodation rights – droit d’hébergement).