8 years ago after bouts of domesric violence against me (Including arrest but no charge - at my request , whose the fool now...) ExH emigrated to US and since then hes visisted a few times and send child support less often. Last year he saw my DS, now 10 years old, and then hes refused to see him again as it was an emotional disaster. ExH has now applied for a court roder witht he batmen "father for justice" helping... anyone got advice and any experince with CAFCASS in simialr circumstances? My soliciotr says hes likely to get some access. I am tryin to stay calm and reasonable but having rebuild my and my DS life and supported and cared for me son alone, the last thing I need is this man back and am full of dread. (Ps will post in divorce too)
Ask the courts to take your sons wishes an dfeelings into acocunt, he's ten they will now listen to what he has to say.
CAFCASS are a mixed bag, you can get an utterly crap officer, in which case he/she will report that everything is fine and dandy and he has rights and should see your son etc, or you will get a good one (I did after two shocking ones), who will listen to you do background checks and listen to your son.
You can ask for supervised contact at a contact centre for a duration as your child needs to re-build his relationship with his father and given the history this does need to be mornitored.
Also obtain reports from GP and teachers of how your child was affected last time and how he has improved since contact has stopped.
The crap CAFCASS officers did nothing practical, suggested that ex have joint over night access. Despite the fact ex has a police record for violence against us, and the fact that my eldest had been showing very frightening signs of distress due to contact.
They not only ignored me, they did not contact the school, ignored police and school reports which I submitted when filing their reports and tried to make out that I agreed with their stance of allowing ex unsupervised contact.
The decent one, has done background checks, has spoken with the school as well as to me and most importantly to my children, he has compiled his reports based on his interaction with my children which has provided a far more balanced report than the; fathers have rights he should get equal contact and the mother agrees to this (which is what the first officer did -news to me as ex is a big risk to my children).
Having had experience of CAFCASS officers I would advise being completely forthright about your reasons for limiting contact and getting school and your GP on side and asking the CAFCASS officer to speak to school as well. Make sure you have in writing from school regarding any behavioural changes etc that your son underwent when having contact with his father.
I did not say the CAFCASS officers were crap for not agreeing with me. CAFCASS officers have a lot of power in court and the first two officers placed my children in a lot of danger because they did not do their jobs.