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Difference in family court hearings

(5 Posts)
helpneeded01 Thu 27-Sep-12 23:00:51


Could someone explain the difference in hearings within the family court please as I am a little confused.

I thought the directions hearings that have been taking place were in front of a district judge as the interim court orders were signed by dj Joe blogs but I've since been told that it isn't in fact a judge but a legal person (sorry can't remember what the correct term that was used)

We now have a final hearing listed in front of magistrates which I believe has happened due to the other side not complying or attending the last directions hearing.
We thought this was a good thing and as they not complied with the district judge it had been passed to magistrates and we would finally get things moving but I've be told that magistrates aren't any good and we should be seeing a district judge. And that district judges are qualified lawyers but magistrates are just members of the public
So now I'm totally confused.

Could someone just very briefly explain what the difference in hearings and judges etc

Collaborate Fri 28-Sep-12 00:17:37

The individual conducting the directions appointment in the mags (or FPC) is a court clerk - the legally qualified person who advises the lay magistrates. They cannot make any contact, residence or other such orders, but they do have the power to make directions so as to tee up those cases for final hearings.

helpneeded01 Fri 28-Sep-12 02:48:36

Thank you for your reply....

So am I understanding you right, that the recent hearings we've had the person who made the decision on the contact to take place until next review hearing plus any statements required is a court clerk

And district judges or magistrates are used for hearings for final contact orders not the interim ones issued at direction hearings.

Collaborate Fri 28-Sep-12 07:12:16

If you look at the previous orders the contact part of them (as opposed to directions) have been expressed as a recording of an agreement.

Collaborate Fri 28-Sep-12 07:13:04

So yes, they will have been a court clerk, who is a qualified lawyer.

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