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Update to Courts dealing with applications and listings
My next court date is given as the end of November ...... I loged the paperwork about 6 weeks ago...
The opinions here are not that of Separated Dads, but merely a loving father who has been through the process and has come out the other side.

I posted before on how after having had 2 vacated or postponed 1st Hearings, a date was then set for mid November. This after applying for a variation hearing with specific issues on an urgent basis at the begining of June.
My Solicitor wrote to the Court suggesting such a long shot date was unacceptable although we thought nothing would come of it. After 3 weeks the Court wrote back giving a listing date 5 days later. Letters to the Court sometimes can work.

The interesting point to note on how the Courts are really struggling and for others with hearing coming up to note is that via my Solicitor we sent in a Final Position Statement the day before the hearing for the Judges attention.

The hearing as is now going to be usual, was remote on the telephone. Just before the hearing time I was contacted by a CAFCASS officer to check details.
Clearly the case officer had no details and little knowledge of the application which was evident by the questions asked.
Whilst not the same officer who conducted the Safe Guarding letter I asked if a copy of the bundle was available to them for the hearing. It wasn't !
I asked if the Final Position Statement as sent the day before was available - it wasn't. I checked if the Position Statement would be before the Judge.
The reply - Absolutely not if sent yesterday as the Courts staff are at least 2 weeks behind processing case documentation and not looking like caching up any time soon
due to a huge backlog of cases.

It's another glaring example of the weakness HMCTS gives to the Family Courts. I've since learnt that in the Criminal Courts they have for some time have used a digital case system where relevant information is uploaded directly to a portal. The Family Courts still rely totally on a generic system of emailing the Court directly ... and just trust they are not busy and have time to distribute accordingly ..... the restrictions of Covid-19 has put paid to that. Approx 2 weeks to safely get a document into a case bundle is avery long time and is worth flagging for anyone with a hearing coming up in the near future.
If more and more hearings are to be remote either by telephone or video link, then the opportunity as before to simply hand the Judge or the Court Clerk an additional document on the day itself is simply not possible .........
That doesn’t sound good. So are you having an actual hearing? If so could you take the position statement with you. But if it’s a remote hearing and documents don’t get through that is no good. You could try asking for the Judge’s email address and say you want to send him a note in time for the hearing.
Hi Charlie , 1st Hearing went ahead a few days ago and I updated just to give warning from my recent experience that any emailed documents to a Court should be given much much longer time than previously thought reasonable. Certainly the days of emailing a document being sent the day before with an expectation of it being read by a Judge or Magistrates is over. My Solicitor who is very experienced was very surprised to find it may now take a couple of weeks for an urgent note to get through.

You would have thought it reasonable to obtain either the Judge's or his/her clerk judical email address. Some will give and allow this most won't.
At the end of the hearing my Solicitor asked the Judge if she could email the Interim Order via his email address. He declined to give it and said just send back to the Court
as normal.

And that is the problem in that there is no available list of Judge's emails or Court clerks, even for the legal profession. The problem is made more difficult for all when individual courts have their own idiosyncrasies so no standard procedure for all.

In my case it has now been listed for a Final Hearing at some point after January 2021 and it will be Court rather than a telephone hearing.

I just wanted to highlight the issue of sending documents into Court by email - especially position statements which often go in the day before.
2 weeks is the timeframe required for it to read.
Cheers. Is your interim order what you wanted?

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