Turns out I am back in court tomorrow for the "section 7 hearing" although Cafcass have requested a 4 week extension so the report hasn't been completed.
Unless anything changes in the next few hours I the hearing is going ahead, the ex has got her solicitor to ask for it to be adjourned but again the court say its still listed.
Does anyone have any advice as I'm going on my own tomorrow (have a barrister and solictor) at my first hearing. Should I request that some sort of contact is reinstated? barring in mind the ex actually allowed me to see my daughter for a week around christmas ?
Nerves are getting to me a little bit as I'm representing myself but I don't really have anything to loose so don't want to throw hundreds at a essentially pointless hearing.
Court will seem daunting on your own, but won't be as bad as you think, the judges are used to self repping and allow for it.
Biggest advice is to take as many notes with you as you can and keep them simple and bullet pointed so they are easy to read and as and when needed. and then take notes of anything that is said and agreed too so you can check that everything is in any order that may be written.
Keep calm and refer to your ex by name if you need to refer to her at all.
Good luck and let us know how you get on.
Firstly she also went unrepresented. Both the court and the other party had both not had the letter from cafcass requesting the 4 week extension!!! I took my copy along with me and they have had a copy for this. Other than that the hearing was literally thrown out and I didn’t even get an opuortunity to speak. The magistrate made it clear that she could not make any further progress at all and have issued me with a new hearing date of 14th March.
I’m now a little worried in regards the section 7 report. I’ve contacted cafcass just who say my case worker works part time and only works Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. I’ve still heard nothing regards the report!! Surely they can’t ask for another extension ? I’m really starting to panic regards this as I really don’t want a further extension!
You probably won't, they may wait until they hear from the court...it's bad that the court didn't know about the extension request from CAFCASS, but equally remiss of CAFCASS not to chase it up with the court, when they didn't hear back from them, to either allow or reject their request for an extension.
Just keep on top of it and perhaps give your caseworker a call on one of the days she's supposed to be working.
I have contacted them but the duty officer is in court. I have text my case worker also but I’m not holding my breath in regards me getting a reply.
I’m based with cafcass Birmingham and have to walk past their office every day for university! I’m thinking about popping in Tuesday and asking to physically speak to someone is this something you would recommend ?
It certainly won't harm to have the house babyproofed. The only thing I'd say is to be up to date with current guidelines on safety. Ie. Plug socket covers are both unnecessary and a potential hazard in themselves. Cot bumpers are a danger, cots shouldn't be placed close to a window or radiator, no hazards around, not near curtains etc. I have quite an in depth knowledge on child safety (both in my job, and as the mum of 3 children, one with additional needs) and I know my partner was really daunted about the whole baby proofing thing. I'm happy to answer any questions you have on this.
I found the following document useful in knowing what structure the s7 would take (I've added it as an attachment hopefully).
My boyfriend stated it was a lot more intense than he was expecting. The questions were quite in depth. He came out feeling really worried, however his fears were unfounded as his s7 report was extremely positive towards him (even if they won't currently recommend shared care which is what he is asking for).
Be prepared as to what you are asking for, and why. How you plan to do this, and why it is of benefit to your child.