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celebration hearing(6 Posts)
We finally had AO made on 7th March, and have since had the court paperwork, the long birth certificate and a passport. Hooray!
However, we haven't heard anything at all about the celebration hearing, which is sad, because we want to use it as a sort of "christening" where our family can come and be merry with us and LO. We've actively avoiding doing anything similar to this up until now as we wanted it to be tied in with the court attendance.
The AO came out to us with a letter dated 17th March, saying we've contacted XXXbury (our local) court to let them know to schedule you a ceremonial.
Nothing has arrived.. and on the AO they have put a typo in our house name - we did try and get this rectified but it was so much more trouble than it was worth. It's still very recognisable. I don't THINK the postman would be confused.. but he might.
Now I'm freaking out that they've lost us in the system, because it's been 7 weeks since the AO and no-one's even contacted us with a potential date! So I rang XXXbury court and it turns out they dont "Do Children", instead you have to go to XXXtown court, which is in the county capital, over an hour away from us, and GRIM. we've never done more than drive through.
So I rang XXXtown court and they said that since my case number is from the LA where LO was adopted, they can't help, they have no idea, and I have to go back to the original LA and ask them whether they know when the hearing is. Original LA's family court don't take phone calls, only emails, to which they have a "20 working day reply time".
I feel sad. Not only do I now think we've been lost in the system, even if we haven't. we've got to have a celebration in Grimtown. HALP! Tell me something optimistic!
Grimtown is probably where they take place, however, you can ask foir anywhere in the country, so you could email the LA and ask for Naicecity in a neighbouring district?
If XXXbury court doesn't do children, they're telling you it's not an appropriate place for you to bring children due to the case mix etc, so definitely better to know that. If you're sure you want the ten minute court hearing (which is sometimes important to do depending on the age of the child, their previous expectations etc) then as PP said, you can request for it to be anywhere you like. It may well be far nicer to pick a special place that means something to you, and have your own gathering/meal with a little speech and the people that matter to you.
We'd heard very mixed things about local celebration hearings - some positive "very brief, judge said a few kind words, we took a picture, then we were hustled out", and some negative "children got scared waiting with a lot of shouting aggressive people from other hearings, we were only allowed the 09.00 slot and then had to wait an hour anyway". So we skipped ours and held our own with just us and grandparents.
years later when we felt we might all cope with a bigger crowd
We did them all separate in the end too. Once hearing had happened we had our celebration party which was big celebration, hall bouncy castles etc, two weeks after that finally our court day (lame) just dh and I went with our sw. We had a coffee with her and then had a lovely family day. Another few weeks after that an immediate family christening, small with food at home, all lovely and all surprisingly meaningful. We didn't worry about the court thing being the same day or wanted loads at that so was nice to do before. You still have the order so all official whatever you do! Get planning xx
Thanks all. We did decide to take your advice and just plan a shindig, LO is fine to cope with my family now (it's taken a year of very gradual infiltration but she's there, bless her). In the meantime the court got their act together-ish and gave our SW a date of 6th June in the OK town! Still no letter or contact with us from them but I don't really care so much any more. If it happens, it happens.
We just had her new NHS no through too. She's had a million hospital and dr appointments by now and I'm scared we are going to lose some of her paperwork. Her Dr says she refuses to send the birth name paperwork "back to central" and keeps it in a safe place in the surgery for when we inevitably need to refer to it. I'm pleased about that, but what about the hospital? We are currently 3 weeks in to a 6 week wait for chromosomal test results under her birth name. They'll figure out who we are, right? I trust the competency of no one any more.
Finally, how do I tell Child Benefit office?
We seem to be in very similar position to you! We have the same celebration hearing date as you and Like you I'm really worried about the medical appointments. Although our Lo has genetic diagnosis from birth we are awaiting a referral back to genetics so hoping it doesn't get lost.
Child benefit contacted us to confirm new name although that was 2 months after adoption order.
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