urgent advice re cafcass report(13 Posts)
CAFCASS would 'normally' be asked to file copies of the report with the court and with both parties. If your partner has a solicitor then I would have thought CAFCASS would file a copy with them (and you are entitled to have a copy) or if your partner is LIP then a copy would be sent to him directly.
Despite what the last order says it's normal practice for CAFCASS to file copies of their report with both parties.
This doesn't surprise me as the courts and CAFCASS seem to do what they like (!).
It's probably grounds to have your hearing on monday adjourned as you have not had an opportunity to view the evidence for your hearing (the report). If you basically only receive your report on the day or 5 minutes before the hearing, request an adjournment as it would be prejudicial to you having a fair hearing as you have not had sufficient time to examine the evidence.
It's absolutely outrageous to not have received the CAFCASS report, after all, if there are serious errors in it, you have not had any opportunity to challenge these errors and request an addendum report to be filed.
If there is already an existing order for every other weekend and the ex has been breaching this court order then yes, he should be asking for enforcement of the order.
... question though, if partner has not been having any contact since MAY, why has he not returned it to court before for enforcement? Or written to the judge who made the original order pointing out that the ex is in breach of a court order, showing contempt for the court and you are asking for the existing order to be enforced.
You should be seeking attachment of a penal notice (which in reality is not worth the paper it's written on) and asking the ex for her reasons for braeching an order which has been made in the child's best interests. The child is missing out on contact with dad and her relationship with dad is suffering.
Realistically nothing will happen, the ex may get a mild telling off from the judge but that's it... concentrate on the CAFCASS report.
Hi Jammi - has your dp tried counselling/mediation? IME when things get to this level more can be achieved by having both mum and dad sitting in a room and talking/screaming/shouting and then taling again than any court order.
The courts rely very heavily on Cafcass reports and unless they are factually wrong tend to follow their recommendations.
I would suggest that your dp make it very clear to the judge on Monday that he would be prepared to go to mediation as a way forward; if nothing else he will come across as reasonable which may well get him a more sympathetic hearing.
If he does have anything to say about the Cafcass report he should ask the judge for leave to file a statement with his comments before any further decision is made.
IME judges tend to treat LIPs fairly, and if anything make more allowances for them as they are unrepreented.
I went LIP and it was a good experience! Better than using a useless tapeworm, sorry, solicitor who had previously cost me thousands. I went with a McKenzie friend who helped me out immensely.
Your partner SHOULD have returned the matter to court for enforcement as the ex was breaching a court order. The £80 cost of a C2 would have been worth it - because you are asking the court to enforce the pre-existing order, which has presumably been made in the child's best interests! When returning matters to court it's usually advised to seek costs for the application, that will get the ex's mind concentrated.
Unfortunately until October when the Children and Adoption Act (2006) (enforcement) is enacted there is little to be done for non-compliance with a court order. The act allows commital for community service to be issued for non-compliance of court orders.
This doesn't help you out now.
As the CAFCASS officer has NOT interviewed yourselves or witnessed the child with partner, this is a clearly treating you unequally. CAFCASS guidelines say that both parents should be treated equally - so if mother is intereviewed, so should dad, if child is witnessed at mum's house, child should be witnessed at dad's house. This is CAFCASS's own guidelines.
I would be drawing the court's attention to this - and request that the current CAFCASS report is treating you unfairly, the report has not been able to ascertain the relationship between child and dad and thus is not complete. An addendum report should be filed and the CAFCASS officer should do his/her job. CFR's won't normally attend court unless ordered to by the court, as they're too busy (poor things) and would only normally be present for a finding of fact hearing for cross-examination.
Bottom line is - CAFCASS report is not complete as they have not viewed child at dad's or even interviewed dad. Report is incomplete and to use this as a basis for a judgement would be in breach of your article rights (right to fair trial) and will form your basis for Appeal should an order be made.
CFR should be ordered to complete their report and file an addendum. Hearing should be adjourned until then
Current court order should be enforced - ask the court why they are allowing contempt to be shown for the court and a breach of the court order happening?
good luck with the hearing but I fear by making a melodramatic geasture and 'hoping to shake some sense into the ex' will be an empty gesture as these people only believe their own BS.
Your partner should fight and fight and fight and never give up until all avenues have been explored.
A wishy washy CAFCASS report means that he/she is just sitting on the fence. CAFCASS should be pushed to make a recommendation (if it was asked for in the previous hearing).
This is why you should have had your input into the report - so you could gently question the CFR and see what their views where, what their timeframe is, what they are going to do and then you slot in with it.
Looks like this next hearing is going either for dad to give up, further directions, ask the judge to make a decision on the wishy washy CAFCASS report or you ask CAFCASS to do their job properly and interview dad and do an observation with child at dad's and file an addendum report and actually come to some sort of recommendation.
Why does she hate him so much? If it means he gets to see his daughter is there anything more he can do to address the source of her hostility?
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