Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2006] All ER (D) 49 (Jan)
Neutral Citation: [2005] EWCA Civ 1660
Court: Court of Appeal, Civil Division

Thorpe, Rix and Wilson LJJ

Representation Caroline Gibson for the mother.
  K appeared in person.
  Simon Miller for S.
  Barbara Mills for CAFCASS.
  Ian Robertson for the guardian.
Judgment Dates: 16 November 2005


Family proceedings - Orders in family proceedings - Contact order - Allegations of domestic violence between parents - Whether failure to consider allegations of domestic violence amounting to flaw in trial process - Whether appropriate in circumstances to set aside judge's order.

The Case

Where the reformed practice for courts of trial in family proceedings to investigate, sometimes as a preliminary issue, disputed allegations of domestic violence and harassment, had not been followed in the instant case, that amounted to a serious deficiency in the trial process. However, in the circumstances, and given the delay in the mother's appeal, which was impossible to overlook and difficult to mitigate in the light of subsequent events, including considerable professional investment in the development of the relationship between the children and their fathers, the welfare of the children prohibited a return to an unlimited trial.

Practice Areas

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