Supporting a Father to re-establish contact with his baby

Marie represented a Father who had been having contact with his very young baby for several months after he and his partner separated.

However, when he started a new relationship the Mother became difficult about contact and there were problems at handover. The Mother made allegations of abuse and threats, which he denied, and contact stopped. The Mother obtained an ex parte injunction based on those allegations, and the Father made an application for a Child Arrangements Order. The Judge ordered supervised contact at the first hearing, and the case will be reviewed at the first hearing on his application (FHDRA). At this hearing contact was increased, some supervised by an agreed third party and the rest will be at a contact centre.

The court decided a fact finding hearing was not necessary and ordered an s.7 report. The next hearing will be a DRA and will consider how contact is to proceed and whether a final order can be agreed. If not a final hearing will be listed.