M v MGM & Anor  EWFC 72 (11 March 2022)
The child was 5 years old and had been living with the maternal grandmother since he was a young baby. The maternal grandmother had a special guardianship order for the child. The child’s mother applied to court for leave to apply to discharge the special guardianship order, and for contact with the child as this had broken down.
The judge considered the legal test of whether there had been a “significant change in circumstances since the making of the special guardianship order”. The judge confirmed that this test should be construed broadly and so it could relate to a change in the mother’s or maternal grandmother’s circumstances.
The mother’s application for leave was ultimately dismissed because the allegations she sought to raise against the maternal grandmother were already known at the time the special guardianship order was made, and although the mother had started to make some changes to her life, the Judge did not consider these to be sufficient.
The Judge considered that the issue of contact needed to be reviewed by the court and therefore the mother’s application for contact continued.
The full case can be viewed here:
Maria Chainani is a solicitor in the family department specialising in representing parents, children and extended family members in care proceedings and private law children proceedings. Maria is contactable on 01268 240400 firstname.lastname@example.org