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TOPIC: Contact Order C100 Guide

Contact Order C100 Guide 2 years 11 months ago #10062

  • Yoji
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Hi,

I was perhaps hoping that a Mod (actd) could make this a thread sticky. Many have come and explained their trials and tribulations. This will therefore serve as a full guide, and i am making my way through a Representing Yourself At Court document as we speak.

Guide to Raising and Application and the Court Process

For many people, money might not be an option. This has in the past lead to many parents being limited or excluded all access to their Children. This for a whole variety of reasons.

Like many visitors to this site, I myself have had no recourse but to engage, and participate through the Courts and its processes to secure the time I hold most precious.

Is Court the Right Decision

I have to say that before Court might become a necessity it is always important that you try and work things out with your ex-partner in order that you be able to see your child/children. I have listed a few options to try before you raise an application to the Courts:
• What is your current contact arrangement? What are the reasons you are not happy with it? How would any change you might request impact on the situation
• Use non-pressuring techniques and language when requesting to begin or resume contact with your child through your ex-partner
• If possible go direct through your ex-partner and try and explain that you are in this for the long haul and that you are an important part of your childs life. If your ex-partner have a Solicitor acting for them, unless they expressly stated you go through them then it is worth trying to keep dialogue when it comes to discussing matters to do with your children
• Reflect on yourself personally, are you showing animosity in other area’s to your ex-partner. This might make them behave somewhat irrationally and force them to be over protective, especially on matters considering contact. If you believe your ex-partner is being un-co-operative… what are you doing to help the situation?
• Again reflect on your behaviour with your children. Do you offer a safe, nurturing and supportive environment? Do you provide activities? If not it might be worth investing in at least one a week. Local facilities to improve bonding costs little to nothing and can provide footing for lifelong assurances to your child of your commitment to them

If this fails it is always worth using the threat of Court to try and start gaining some meaningful contact. With luck this contact will bear fruit and in most instances contact will usually happen and continue to happen on a very consistent basis.

Court is the Right Decision

If you are now seriously contemplating using the Court system, then it is clear that the above options have failed. From separation many people will have Solicitors acting on their behalf. Often these Solicitors can charge quite astronomical prices. From my own research, raising a Contact Application will cost between £400 and £600+ going through a/your Solicitor. The Application process, is much easier than some people would believe. This inclusive of the below mentioned fee (*).

The price to raise a Contact Application to the Courts is £200.00* paid to the Court. Those on low incomes/benefits or high outgoing will qualify for a Remission of Fees. See The Exemption from Court Fee's.

Before raising a Contact Application it is important to remember the following:
• A Contact Application can be a long process and at best cases will have resolve after 6weeks (when the Application is heard at Court) or up to and over 2yrs where there are serious implications relating to the Child’s Health/Wellbeing or other issues to do with the Parents
• As well as the Application fee, there could be the need to have time from work as well as Travel costs
• The Court may give certain directions, requiring you miss additional time from work. Common examples are Mediation and PIPs (Parenting Information Programme)
• Raising of the Application can and does in many instances result in all present Contact being ceased (usually with the backing of a Solicitors say so). This is because it often makes a challenge to the Custodian Parents control of the “asset” (Child/Children)
• And most importantly, if an agreement is reached through Courts, it might not give the outcome you were hoping for. Recent research however suggests that over 50% of Contact Application requests are upheld by the Courts. In other words, the Applicant attains what they were after…

Now it is time to discuss how to raise the Application.

The Contact Application C100

C100 form
The form is 10 pages in length.

Page 1 - Your details (The Applicant) and usually your ex-partners details (The Respondent). It then details the Children with reference that this application is to be made.

Pages 2 and 3 - Covers the personal details of the above, and is easy to complete.

Page 4 - Relates to any other persons who should know anything about your (The Applicants) proposed intentions. Common examples might be someone who is or has been acting as a guardian while a Parent is also recognised as having legal involvement.

Page 5 – Simply tick No… your are going to be acting as a LIP (Litigant in Person).

Page 6 – Relates to the Children, it is literally a case of reading what is being asked, and processing from this.

Pages 7 – This is the area of the form that must be correct. As such I will examine this in more detail:
Section 7 :
- Firstly list the arrangements following separation. What were your agreed contact times with your children. Have they changed? If so list what new arrangements were made. If the agreement broke down state your reason why (note this will often be different from the Respondents views).
- Why are you bringing this Application to Court. A good generic example might be: To ensure that [CHILDRENS NAMES] have regular guaranteed quality time with me
- What do you wish the Court to do? This is where you will start with: “I would ask that the Court seek to support me in…” and then having your ideal Contact arrangement, or one that previously stood, upheld.
Reasons Given by Respondent… although this is listed under Sect7, do not include this. They will give their own reasons at Court.

Remember if you exceed the space provided, reference Sect7 underlined on a separate sheet (preferably typed) and put: See Attached Sect7.

Section 8 :
The Document: Putting Your Children First is an excellent read. And I would seriously recommend all who fill out an Application to take the time to read it. It will give you some solid idea’s on how (generally) you as a Father should be stepping up to the plate!

Mediation Section: If you have attempted mediation previously simply include a point to state what agreements if any were made. If no agreement was reached: State approximately how many sessions were attended by each party. If mediation produced an agreement, say what this was. This agreement may likely be what you are asking to be imposed. If you have not attempted Mediation it is important to note that Court will as a Mandatory expectation make an Order for both parties to attend Mediation. A statement might need to read that: I feel that a Mediation agreement would break down, owed to it being a verbal agreement. If this has already happened… your point is validated. Be aware that any agreement reached through Court Ordered Mediation should be brought back to Court to have this put into an Order.

Page 8 – This is for any previous involvement of any of the [many] welfare agencies.

Page 9 – Is the page that highlights any special/extra requirements relating to either you (The Applicant) or [to the best of your knowledge] your ex-partner (The Respondent). Ensure that this document is signed and dated.

Page 10 – Checklist. Tick any of the following boxes that apply most commonly: Signing Section 12, Copies for the Courts, Dates of Birth, additional sheets and finally any EX160 Exemption sheets attached.

The Exemption from Court Fee’s

As stated, money is not as forthcoming to some as it is to many.

The Court will allow remission of fee’s based on 3 particular areas:
- Those in receipt of Legal Aid will automatically qualify for their fee’s to be waivered. Those in receipt of benefits are also covered by this.
- Those in employment where the gross income is less than approximately £1,300 a month (but increases by around £200 for every other child).
- Those who can have a strong case to prove that their income is swallowed up by their outgoings. Use every aspect of your outgoings. Things like “further spending” will not be considered but food expenses are. Remember to put the exact amount (to the penny). The more you can prove yourself to not be in a position of financial ability to pay the better.

Before your send your document off, sleep on the information you have contained. Most people will have left at least one item from page 7.

Provided you are happy with this you will need to send 4 signed copies off to the Court that is classed as Local to Your Child/Children. One of these copies will be stamped and returned to you, one will be retained by the Court, one will be sent to CAFCASS and of course one will be sent to the Respondent.
~E=mc2~
Last Edit: 1 year 10 months ago by actd.
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Re: Contact Order C100 Guide 2 years 11 months ago #10063

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Wow Yoji,
That's an excellent guide. I'll leave it to the forum administrators to put this in the proper place rather than making it sticky. Thanks for spending the time to do this, it's going to be so useful to so many people :D
DadTalk moderator

I am not qualified in family law, or other area of family matters. I am simply a dad who has been through the mill. Any opinions I give are my own, and any advice should be checked before acting on it.
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Re: Contact Order C100 Guide 2 years 9 months ago #11571

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UPDATE LEGAL LOOPHOLE

Holiday Contact Order

Just through further reading have stumbled upon something that is a Legal loophole that can result in considerable cost, and equally this addition aims to save you potentially thousands of pounds.

A Contact Order that specifies Holiday time and specific dates, it should be noted that although the Childrens Act under c.41 Part 2 Section 11O Compensation for Financial Loss.

Example

John wishes to take his children on holiday. His ex-wife is being unco-operative and John has raised his Contact Order through the Courts.

The Holiday is set to leave for Saturday 1st [MONTH].

Upon going to collect his children for the Holiday, his ex-wife refuses the handover.

Police cannot become involved in a Civil Matter and equally the Court is not open.

John has to go on holiday. Upon his return he is void from being able to seek financial compensation under the above section.

This is because, in order for there to be first an allocation/eligibility to claim, there must be an Enforcement Order on the existing Holiday Contact Order. Thus, John’s case would be refused.


It should be noted that an Enforcement Order cannot be applied until a Warning Notice has been applied. A Warning Notice cannot be applied until an Order is broken. Thus John in the above example would not be able to submit his Warning Notice until returning, and even should any attempt be made to recover the money. No Enforcement Order has been granted. Thus making him unable to recoup financial loss.

Getting Around the Loophole

In this instance it is imperative that John arranges the Contact Application to stipulate that the Contact Order granted state specifically that handover be done on the day prior to the holiday no later than 10am, and on a Monday-Friday. In addition, any necessary Passport/Travel documents be handed to John 1month prior to the Holiday being taken.

In this way should the Contact Order for the Holiday be broken. John can then contact the Court where the Order was made. This will result in an Emergency hearing within so many hours. John and his ex-wife will be expected to attend and a Judge will then order the handover to take place and also a Judge will Order that all necessary documentation be handed over.
~E=mc2~
Last Edit: 2 years 9 months ago by Yoji. Reason: Re-clarification.
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Re: Contact Order C100 Guide 2 years 3 months ago #15078

  • raghu
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hi yoji, i dont have the address of my wife as she is staying in a refuge. in the c100 form, it asks for the address where the notice needs to be delivered. can you please guide me as to how to proceed in this case?
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Re: Contact Order C100 Guide 2 years 3 months ago #15092

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Hi Raghu,

If you don't know where this is, you will also need to file along with your C100 a form called a C4 Seek and Locate form.

This will have the Court locate through any means they have at their disposal. In the past I've heard that when these are applied, it takes longer to get a hearing date at Court but I've never had someone say "Yes it definitely does"...

Hope that helps :)
~E=mc2~
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