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CAFCASS

 
(@warhammer)
Estimable Member Registered

Morning

well my case has now spiralled and feels out of control. My son is now going to be spoken to by CAFCASS, which on one hand I’m very happy about but on the other concerned that he will continue being coerced by his mother and will not tell the truth. I’m told CAFCASS are experts and they will see through this. They said the meeting with him might take place at school, but she works at the school so will still be near him, telling him what to say. I wish the meeting could be CAFCASS just turn up, so she can’t influence him beforehand. Do CAFCASS ask the right questions of children, can they tell if a child is being coerced? 

I really can’t believe how fast my original application as being escalated by my ex who is now accusing me of all sorts. Especially since CAFCASS have done safeguarding on us both before and no issues raised. This is not a new child arrangements, it’s been in place several years.

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Topic starter Posted : 17/05/2024 11:29 am
(@felix5)
Eminent Member Registered

Hi Mate,

I was repeatedly told that CAFCASS would recognise the signs of alienation since they are supposed to be experts in this area. However, the Section 7 report turned out to be a complete mess. Despite having a perfectly normal relationship with my child for 6 years after the separation, with no safeguarding issues or reports, the report went against me. One child said negative things about me to the CAFCASS officer, influenced by mum, who had stopped both children from seeing me for months before the Section 7 report, following unfounded allegations.

The CAFCASS officer recommended no contact, stating, "I don't know what has happened to the child, but they don't want to see there father and that should be respected."

Child in question is 10 years old. 

Now, we have to cross-examine the officer in court and ask why she didn't investigate the possibility of alienation, even though we provided substantial evidence.

I followed all the advice online and from my solicitor, remained calm, and stayed child-focused.

While I may be one of the unlucky ones with CAFCASS, the judge has NOT followed the CAFCASS recommendation, which suggests they also think the report is not solid.

Additionally, in the first safeguarding call from CAFCASS, no safeguarding issues were raised.

 

So advice is: do your best with CAFCASS, you might get someone decent but if you don't, hopefully the judge will see through it. 

ReplyQuote
Posted : 21/05/2024 3:29 pm

top tips to support your child after breakup

(@warhammer)
Estimable Member Registered

Even more worried now. My case is more or less exactly same as yours. Did you get opportunity to cross exam ex during hearing? My paperwork says I can through solicitor. I’ve spoken with a solicitor,  who is saying solicitors can not cross examine so I need a Barrister £5000. My child is going to say exactly same as your one child, he will say whatever his mother tells him to.  What did the judge decide, have you got contact?

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Topic starter Posted : 23/05/2024 11:34 am
(@warhammer)
Estimable Member Registered

Sorry just reread your reply about cross examination, so I presume you have another hearing. My hearing is all day. 

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : 23/05/2024 11:36 am

(@bill337)
Illustrious Member

@warhammer lately have come across cases where dad is self representing and can't afford barrister, so court appoints a QLR (Qualified Legal Representative) to do cross examinations. could you ask court to appoint one for you?

ReplyQuote
Posted : 23/05/2024 1:12 pm
(@warhammer)
Estimable Member Registered

@bill337 hi at the hearing they said if either of us didn’t have one they would appoint one. When the paperwork came it said if don’t have a solicitor the legal clerk would ask the other party the questions I list. A solicitor has just told me a solicitor can not cross examination, so I will need a barrister £5000. 
It’s all blowing up in to what sounds like to me a massive case, where I’m now at risk of not seeing my child again. I’ve been seeing him for 10 years. Why do they straight off believe the applicant, with no evidence and stop worse all contact. Because they were running late at first hearing they said they had not even read the case paperwork. It all seems bizarre to me. It would be clear for anyone to see if they read the statements from both of us, they would see it’s revenge all because I dared to question the ex on something.

ReplyQuote
Topic starter Posted : 23/05/2024 1:20 pm

how contact centres work

(@felix5)
Eminent Member Registered

Hi Mate,

The judge ordered contact to remain and for both children to attend. However, daughter who has been successfully alienated doesn't come. Only my son does. Mum says she can't "force" daughter therefore she doesn't come. I have successfully co-parented for 6 years, only when I put in application to see children for more time do shocking allegations come out and my daughter suddenly turns against me.

I think the judges have seen through it, however the cafcass lady was and is awful . She didn't look into anything or listen to my concerns about alienation. Waiting for final hearing, hopefully they can see what is happening. 

I would say - you can't control what your son is going to say.  You can hope he doesn't get manipulated, how old is he? If he is manipulated and persuaded, they might be able to see through it. Don't worry too much otherwise, you will dig yourself an early grave. If you aren't happy with the report, you can request it be re-done after cross-examination. My advice is -  Focus on what you can control for now.

Keep trying to communicate with your son- call him, send letters, emails. Everything that is ignored will be evidence that mum is alienating you and not encouraging contact. Have you applied for urgent hearing? Can you visit your nearest court with an application and ask to be heard urgently? I did this and it worked. 

Hope it gets better for you mate, hopefully your son will be strong and pull through. You have the father-son relationship on your side, which I think is stronger.

This post was modified 3 weeks ago 2 times by Felix5
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Posted : 03/06/2024 10:30 am
(@warhammer)
Estimable Member Registered

Sorry not been on here for bit. Good that your son is still coming to see you And sorry your daughter is not. Might sound like blackmail but could you find tickets to something she would like to go to and ask her if she wants to go with you. Or if a family member like a grandparent could also try and get some contact, and in time you drop in. I think our children who are being coerced in this way just need to see us again. I’d be reminding CAFCASS and the courts that if you hadn’t filed the application for more time with your children, your daughter would still be seeing you. And if mother had concerns why didn’t she raise them prior to your application. 
My son is 11, our CAO has been in place 10 years. I currently have no contact, I’m writing letters until end of July then one phone call a week, until next courts date end of august. I’m waiting for CAFCASS to contact me re doing section 7. Solicitor wants 10k, Barrister who I need as well wants 15k up, plus vat. His letters back to me are short and no love, kisses which is something he would normally do. I think he will say that he doesn’t want to see me, which is what his mother will tell him. All of this has happened because I sent her a email about his secondary school application, which she signed falsely saying I was in agreement with it,  I wasn’t, that upset her, the very next day he alleged I pushed him a week earlier. I did not push him. The school and mash said no further action, no safeguarding but she stopped contact. I filed c79, she then filed non molestation, and later a c100 to stop all contact and remove my PR. Like you if I hadn’t said anything I would still be seeing my son. This was all done in revenge for me daring to question her. I’ve got to come up with a list of questions to cross exam her on, it says the question are to dismiss her evidence against me. She should be ashamed of herself. It’s Father’s Day tomorrow doubt I will be getting a card. I know it’s not my sons fault, he will do what she says. His life must be easier for him now, as she won’t be questioning about his time here with me. People keep saying karma will happen, doubt it. When/if he comes looking for me in the future, I’ll be here waiting. Wish you luck at final hearing. 

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Topic starter Posted : 15/06/2024 7:06 pm

top tips to support your child after breakup

Free online course for separated parents. Click here

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