Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council v VW & Others  EWFC 83
The Local Authority sought a care order and placement order for a child who had been in foster care since birth. The mother and father did not oppose the making of these final orders.
However, an issue arose in relation to the threshold criteria. Although the mother had accepted that the threshold criteria had been met, and had made admissions in relation to the facts relied on by the Local Authority, the Local Authority asked the court to still list a 5 day contested fact finding hearing to decide whether the other parts of their threshold document were found to be true because they did not accept that the mother had admitted enough of the concerns.
The case was therefore listed before Mr Justice Mostyn to consider whether it was proportionate and appropriate for the case to be listed for a final contested hearing on the outstanding threshold issues.
Mr Justice Mostyn held that it would not be in the child’s interests for the mother to go through the ordeal of being cross examined on the threshold issues. The Judge also commented that the cost to public funds in having such a contested hearing could not be justified, was not necessary and there was not positive to any party in having such a contested hearing, only huge downsides.
The case was therefore listed for a 1 hour final hearing for the care orders and placement orders to be made without opposition from the parents.
The full case can be viewed here:
Maria Chainani is an associate 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 email@example.com