Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2006] All ER (D) 91 (Jul)
Neutral Citation: [2006] EWCA Civ 950
Court: Court of Appeal, Civil Division

Wall and Gage LJJ

Representation Andrew Neaves for the guardian.
  Remy Zentar for the mother.
  Jane Gillespie for the first father.
  Patrick Gallagher for the second father.
  Patrick Bowe for the grandmother.
  Nina Bache for the local authority.
Judgment Dates: 13 April 2006


Child - Care - Local authority - Care proceedings - Procedural unfairness - Judge making residence order with supervision order in favour of children's paternal grandmother - Whether proceedings procedurally unfair - Whether order wrong.

The Case

In the circumstances of the instant case, the county court judge had given the impression that he had made up his mind from the outset of the hearing to make the residence order with a supervision order in favour of the children's paternal grandmother which he ultimately did make. Subsequently, the judge heard little in the way of evidence and gave a short judgment which did not adequately explain his reasons for making the order. Accordingly, an independent observer might reasonably have had the perception that the proceedings had been unfair. Moreover, there was material before the judge which was new and which, if it was to be rejected, the judge was required to give careful reasons for so doing, something which he failed to do.

Practice Areas

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