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Children & Child Custody

New funding to support adoptive families

Adoptive parents will benefit from new funding worth £19.3 million to access the best possible care for children who have often been victims of abuse and neglect.

Adoptions in England and Wales

The Office for National Statistics has released a bulletin giving annual statistics on adoptions which took place following court orders in England and Wales in 2012. Figures on adoption orders apply to adoptions by relatives and step-parents as well as adoptions from care.

Care applications in July 2013

The latest figures from the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) have revealed that it received a total of 870 applications in July 2013. This is a 13% decrease compared to those received in July 2012, which was the second highest number of applications in a single month ever.

Council fails to pay proper financial support to foster carers

The Local Government Ombudsman has found that Liverpool City Council has been failing to pay around 340 foster carers the correct amount of allowances for a number of years.

Use of expert witnesses decreases in family courts

New research from Cafcass, the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, has found that the instruction of expert witnesses in cases in family courts involving care applications is decreasing.

Foreign Office marks International Missing Children’s Day

Almost ten new child abduction and international custody cases a week are being dealt with by the Foreign Office, according to newly released Government figures.

New 'Passport to support' for adopters

The government has published ‘Adoption passport: a support guide for adopters’, which sets out the support services adopters can expect from local authorities.

Annual report on international family law

The Office of the Head of International Family Justice for England and Wales (the Office) has published its Annual Report for 2012.

Policy shift needed to prevent child abuse, says NSPCC

Children’s charity the NSPCC is calling for a new approach to child abuse, focusing more on prevention as well as protection. It says this should help close the gap between the number of children who are abused or neglected at home, and the number who are actually protected by local authorities.

Family court applications following separation reach record highs

The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) has continued to see high levels of private law cases in March, with 4,001 new applications passed to Cafcass - a 1% increase on March 2012 levels.

Cafcass is making less use of experienced Guardians

A recent members’ survey by Nagalro has found that the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) is making less use of experienced Children’s Guardian practitioners.

Concerns over handling of international child abductions

Recent research from the Law School at Cardiff University has uncovered threats to the effectiveness of the existing system to deal with international child abduction to England and Wales.

Shared parenting presumption

The Government’s plan to introduce a legal presumption of shared parenting has proved to be very controversial.

Post-adoption support

A recent report from the House of Lords Committee on Adoption Legislation has said that adoptive parents should receive more support to help them care for vulnerable children.

Enforcement of court-ordered child arrangements

Shared parenting charity, Families Need Fathers, has reported that the Government has published its response to the proposals on enforcing court-ordered child arrangements contained in the ‘Co-operative parenting following family separation’ consultation, which ran from 13th June – 5th September 2012.

More support for adoptive families

The past twelve months have seen the Government place great emphasis on improving adoption processes in England for both children and potential adopters.

Children and Families Bill under scrutiny

The Government’s draft Children and Families Bill has recently come under pre-legislative scrutiny by the UK Parliament’s Justice Committee.

Care application levels remain up on last year

In December 2012, the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) received a total of 847 applications.

Helping Children Understand Divorce

The following is an article with advice on the matter of discussing divorce with your children.  Prepare yourself and use the resources that are available, many of which are listed in this article below.

Life after family break-up

Government plans to amend the 1989 Children Act by introducing a presumption of shared parenting are well-intentioned but misguided, say the authors of new research into childhood experience of family break-ups.

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