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(Court of Appeal; Thorpe, Etherton LJJ, Ryder J; 15 March 2012)
The mother suffered from borderline personality disorder due to childhood abuse and her three older children had been removed from her care. When she became pregnant with a fourth child the local authority was optimistic she would be able to care the baby as she was now in a supportive relationship. Her partner had joint residence of his two children by a previous relationship but they made their primary home with their mother. The father failed to return the children to their mother following a period of contact due to concerns they were living in an abusive household.
At a hearing regarding his two children, residence was transferred to the father based on the undertaking that the mother would find alternative accommodation. The judge decided against rehabilitation of the mother and her baby and approved plans for adoption. The judge could not be criticised for taking the decision she did which had not been plainly wrong. Appeal dismissed.
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