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Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Printable Version

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Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - High Peak - 08-27-2020

Just to give an indication of how Covid 19 and the reopening of the Family Courts is affecting the process of applications here is my own case timetable as updated today.

I made an application for a variation to C.A.O. order with a specific issues element attached in early June. This is due to the Ex's relocation which has now taken place a few weeks ago and makes the current C.A.O. unworkable to time and distance. Ex happy to take the my midweek Wednesday's and Sunday's overnight back as I concede it is not in our sons best interest to have him travelling back and forward midweek and what would be very early start time if I kept the Sunday night and me returning him to school on a Monday morning - so I will return him on a Sunday evening on my rotional weekends. She of course does not want to give anything up in return.

First direction hearing before a District Judge was for listed for early August - then postponed until begining of September. Notified today that the hearing is now postponed again until mid November. The FHDRA is a remote hearing by telephone but cancelled again due to non availabilty of Judges !

Quite a mess especially with it needed being resolving before the schools reopen next week. Very very frustrating !!

This should give an indication of probable time scales to anyone considering making an application to Court in the near future.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Charlie7000 - 08-27-2020

Cheers High Peak. Do you know why any of the hearings were postponed (sometimes exes ask for adjournment). Assume once school starts you’ll just need to do the Eow and hope holidays get sorted at the hearing.

Only case I’ve heard of was an enforcement application with a first hearing date after 6 weeks. Maybe depends on region as well.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - High Peak - 08-27-2020

(08-27-2020, 07:36 PM)Charlie7000 Wrote: Cheers High Peak.  Do you know why any of the hearings were postponed (sometimes exes ask for adjournment).  Assume once school starts you’ll just need to do the Eow and hope holidays get sorted at the hearing.

Only case I’ve heard of was an enforcement application with a first hearing date after 6 weeks.  Maybe depends on region as well.

The only reason given on today's postponement of another 10 weeks and the same as before was for 'judicial unavailability'.

Am sure its not for the Ex asking for an adjournment but simply the pressure on the system is immense. If before Covid it was bursting point now its clearly broken down.

Most magistrates are not back in the Family Court as they sit together in 3's and most Famly cases are being heard by Distict Judges so that becomes more limiting to the number of cases being heard. 

It maybe down to region but I hear its a nationwide problem with major cities even harder hit. Most hearing are for the forseeable future remote on the telephone with Judges taking hearings from either chambers or home. 

I understand they are working on a priority basis of cases with very limited Court staff availability.... ( of note is that FDR applications and hearings are of the lowest priority. )

Applications are can easily processed by Court staff and listings eventually given but as I'm experiencing now they can easily be pulled at short notice.

It goes without saying the stress and direct cost on legal fees to delays is immense............ This will be my 4th hearing in 2 years all due to a selffish and totally self absorbed Ex who believes after separation and divorce a child should have a main parent and a very minor one. 

If my experience now is to be typical to any type of hearing timescale it will just play into the hands of any parent who plays the game of frustrating the time children can spends with the other parent.

A very sad state of affairs when we know that resorting to a Court process is a decision not taken lightly. In my case it has to be a fully defined Order ( as given last year ) otherwise she just makes it up to suit herself, fulfilling her own self importance andneed for absolute control.

Ah well only another 10 weeks to go to a First Hearing !


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Charlie7000 - 08-27-2020

Really sorry it’s such a long wait High Peak. Yes it needs to be fully defined. My order is but ex is no longer sticking to it now son is 12 saying he has his own plans. Yes mine is the same - a main parent and a minor one she doesn’t even recognise as a parent.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - High Peak - 08-27-2020

It is a great shame and a failing for our children than when you have 1 parent who is so vehemently against the notion of co parenting and not to be able to consider the interests of the child first that it ultimately becomes a complete breakdown of trust and communication.

Legal input and mediation have no effect or are worthwhile processes which can resolve issues, so we are only left with Court processes - if they become almost unworkable now to what hope have we got left. I know of your shared information on posts Charlie and your Ex seems to have a very similar mind set to mine.
Most of us all we ask for is to be allowed be respectful, caring and loving Dads to our children and to be left alone in peace to do so. I certainly don't interfere in her life and yet I could never co parent without an order defined to the maxium in all areas of detail.

Now she has relocated half the order needs completely reworking and despite me giving up a significant number of nights and midweeks nothing is offered back - and Im deemed to be the unreasonable one.

In 2 1/2 years I am no nearer to figuring out how the mind of an Ex really works ! - each relationship is very different but as we know on this forum very many seem to revert to a very common default position of the child is mine and the power of control should be regarded as absolute.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Charlie7000 - 08-29-2020

I think they just want the child full time and to be the only parent and have a full time family with their H. That’s my view of my ex who now hates me with a passion because I went to court in the first place. They don’t see that the child needs the other parent and feel threatened by them having a Stepmum in my case. Which is ridiculous. My ex was ok for a few years but then wanted to be a full time family when she had another child. She also got worse when son started to talk more. She refuses to co parent and rubbishes everything son does here. At the moment she is minimising the time and I will also have to go back to court.

I wonder if an application to vary is taking longer than an enforcement application.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - High Peak - 08-29-2020

I can only think with the Courts now operating again all be it with a reduced staffing level, that they are working on what they believe is a priority basis of applications and cases. Whilst I can understand their difficulties, to make an application in early June and have now a hearing date for mid November is concerning. It may be vacated gain as I'm sure the pressure from the last 6 months will have many more applications . No one under takes any Court process lightly and is only done so if their is no other alternative.
It's a worrying development to see these times scales and I posted it to give an indication of what might become quite usual.

Another point worth mentioning is a directive to reduce the amount allowed to an inital position statement. We were both given a a maximum of 2 A4 pages which is just ridiculous to give reasonable detail to the issues involved. When you consider line spacing and case header paragraphs with required information, it almost gives advantage to a respondent.

To what makes some of the extreme Ex's like they are with some of the very damaging behaviour shown when a relationship or marriage breakdown is more down to psyclogical issues they have. I'm sure it stems from an absolute belief that as the relationship has failed then as mothers they should be able to control the relationship between children and fathers. Any Court Order is to a degree gong to take that control away. Combine that with probable fear that a child may actually enjoy the time spent with Dad becomes even more frustrating for them. It starts to make for a very toxic mix to co parenting to which only with some experience over a period of time is not helped with a Family Law system which is too reliant on Cafcass rather than trained psychologists.

They seem to want to accept no responsibility for there own actions or decsions so when things go wrong or do not run as they expect they want to shift the blame to some else. Its always someone elses fault but their own.

It's interesting Charlie that your Ex became more hostile after you went to Court. ( I would say to any new Dad to separation from their children if you have an ex who has a character which is manipulative, selfish, lacking in confidence and has an inability to generally share ..... then don't wait, apply for a C.A.O. as soon as possible ! ). Mine went they other way in that she went to Court first and it didn't go as well as she thought or had planned. This clearly both surprised and frustrated her. It didnt help that so much of her evidence was completely discredited at a final hearing and was seen shall be say to be less than truthful.
It unleashed all of her paranoia which remains to this day.... and I suspect will do for years to come.

I suspect for many of us, the hostility intensifys when we just don't roll over and accept what they want - which is either a limited at their choice or better still non existent to being an ever present role in our childrens lives.
In some European countries it is socially unacceptable if separated parents do not or are unable to responsibilty co parent to their children - that feeling is not present in this country as its not really highlighted as being a big enough issue. I think its a huge issue which affects the mental health of not just children but parents as well.
Until there becomes very real penalties if unacceptable behaviour or false allegations are made clearly to frustrate contact then the very real and often distressing issues which affect so many of us. Psychologists would be a huge help in giving proper direction.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Charlie7000 - 08-29-2020

Exactly the hostility intensified because not only did I not roll over and give up my PR (as she demanded!) but she also got torn a strip off in court. Another thing though was finding out more about my home life from statements etc as in she realised son had a happy family life here and hadn’t really thought about what happened when he came. I learned from that not to give too much detail - but heck you have to argue why their life is good with you and why they need to continue with it.

With my ex it is ultimately a) she wants me to be single and no Stepmum and b) I have to just let her decide if and when some comes. Scuff isn’t good for him.


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - warwickshire1 - 08-29-2020

Charlie you need to apply to courts tuesday to variate your order. Also you have a court order so go to school and pick up your son and dont let him go to his mums on a bus as thats not in court order. its not long when your son will not tolerate what his mum is doing and may even question why u didnt put your foot down. remember always you had costs awarded in your favor, not many dad achieve that . if questioned why you didnt fight hard and enforce ..covid and your health. good luck and do what u did previously win your case and re establish contact

ps remember a court application gets the ball rolling. coming on forum and not doing anything is prolonging things Sad


RE: Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings - Charlie7000 - 08-30-2020

Hi Warwickshire. He wouldn’t come if I went to collect him. Have been getting legal advice as to timing. He is quite alienated at the moment. But I hear you.