Acting for children via a Guardian in an acrimonious separation

Marie acted for the Children via their Guardian ad Litem in a protracted case where the parents had separated acrimoniously. The difficulties were such that the court ordered a Guardian to represent the children under rule 16.4. The children live with their Mother, and the Father has applied for a CAO to spend time with them.

Both parents had made allegations of parental alienation, and one of the children was completely refusing contact with their Father. Whilst the other had contact, this was limited to visiting contact.

The court held a fact finding hearing and dealt with the various allegations of the parents against each other. It found that the Mother was alienating the children from the Father and that they were being caused significant harm. She found that the threshold criteria were met and made an Interim Supervision Order to the Local Authority and ordered a s.37 report. The Court also granted alternate weekend staying contact to the Father.

The Local Authority’s report was considered by the court to be of no assistance at all. The Judge discharged the orders and listed the matter for a final hearing to consider whether the younger child should be moved to live with the Father, which is what he seeks. Meanwhile, the children were to remain living with the Mother.