Returning children to their parents

Corey acted for the father of two children who applied jointly with the mother to have their two children returned to their care, the children having been placed with grandparents by Local Authority Children’s Services. The parents were reformed substance misusers. The grandparents resisted returning the grandchildren to the parents.

During the proceedings the mother disclosed that her father, the grandfather, had sexually abused her and one of her sisters. This was denied. An issue arose as to whether this abuse had ever occurred, and, if it had, whether the grandmother was aware of it.

Corey gave advice and support to his client throughout the proceedings, enabling him understand the process and to stay focussed on the desired outcome.

A fact finding hearing was held to determine whether the parents still had parenting issues, and whether the grandparents were fit a proper carers of the children. The grandparents vigorously attacked the character of the mother and father in order to defend themselves.

A court appointed Guardian, who spoke for the children, recommended that the children stay with the grandparents. However Corey’s skilful cross-examination of both grandparents led the Court to find as fact that the grandfather had carried out sexual abuse, and that the grandmother had failed to protect the children from him. The children were returned to their parents’ care.