Grandmother’s application for Special Guardianship Order

This case originally began as a Public Law case but was restarted as Private Law.

After a highly contested Final Hearing, the child was to remain with the then current carers under a Special Guardianship Order.

The Mother suffers with fairly significant mental health issues and also has alcohol and drug abuse issues. She was under the OS, but had initially agreed the placement and was not at the time of the hearing in a position to make any significant contribution to the Final Hearing.

The maternal grandmother, who sought for the child to be placed in her care, had sadly continued to undermine the placement, and refused to engage in mediation.

She made a private law application to have the Special Guardianship Order discharged and for a new SGO to be made in her favour. She further applied for a Child Arrangements Order, in relation to increasing and extending her contact with her grandchild. She currently enjoys a high level of contact, but is refusing to allow this to be observed either by a Social Worker or the Guardian.

The Judge advised her that to pursue her application would not meet with success (no significant change evident), and Grandmother eventually withdrew her application. She sought for the FAO to be extended.

Whilst this is not within her rights, the LA was willing to assist to attempt further mediation, and she was strongly urged to allow observations of her contact.