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Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Family Law, Children, Adoption

Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby shootist » Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:51 am

A child of 13 years lives with his mother and stepfather, his parents having divorced many years ago. He is very unhappy and wants to move in with his father and her father's wife. This is a long standing issue and the child has even said he wants to have his say in court. Can he arrange to be represented by his own lawyer, would he get legal aid to cover all his costs,how complicated would it be for him? At present the father's side fear the reaction of the mother who they consider would react with violence. They seem to use the child as a skivvy and a babysitter for their 6 year old, once leaving him to look after the 6 yr old for a week while mum and stepfather went on holiday. The child is quite mature for his years but is being badly affected by the situation.

This is not a request for legal advice but just advice on the mechanics of the situation.
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby dls » Fri Jul 21, 2017 12:23 pm

look for guardian ad litem
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby shootist » Fri Jul 21, 2017 7:09 pm

Got that one, and thanks. Can I ask further how complicated this would be for the child to apply for himself, and what about legal aid and costs?
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby dls » Sat Jul 22, 2017 5:16 am

One would hope it was obvious that such a child would need legal aid, but it being obvious does not mean that it would in fact be available. I do not know the actual answer.
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby atticus » Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:35 am

This is outside my knowledge and experience. A solicitor experienced in child care matters should be identified and asked.
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby Null » Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:54 am

Assuming there isn't an order already in place and the father has PR, there is nothing to stop the child from packing his things and going to live with him if that's what he really wants. The school and GP will need to be updated, along with the DWP if child benefit is being claimed for the child.

The mother has the option of seeking remedy/access, etc, through a child arrangements order. The C100 child arrangements form can be found on the Internet.

Read the advice notes attached to the form very carefully before proceeding.
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby DannyJP » Sat Jul 22, 2017 5:10 pm

Perhaps this is a case where a mediation really could help. If the child wishes to move and is of an age where his wishes and feelings must be properly taken account of and especially as he may already have the right to "vote with his feet." It would be better for his Mother to hear it from him and with his Father and to come to an arrangement for her ongoing contact and for her to leave the door open for his return if things do not work out. The Court is not always the best place for these discussions/decisions.
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby atticus » Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:01 am

Sort of related, an interesting decision, worth reading.
http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWFC/HCJ/2017/48.html
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Re: Child employing a solicitor re custody.?

Postby shootist » Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:17 am

Very interesting indeed. Also very 'human' on the part of the judge I thought. Thanks for the posting of it.
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