Learning from Rule 9.5

20 OCT 2005

Carole Lewis, CAFCASS Officer, North West Region. The North West region of the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (CAFCASS) held two legal seminars in the summer of 2005 on practice issues arising out of the Family Proceedings Rules 1991 (SI 1991/1247), r 9.5. CAFCASS had analysed 60 completed r 9.5 cases to consider learning points and to try and understand better whether the orders had benefited children. The seminar delegates concluded that there were several benefits to children arising from r 9.5 appointments and these included bringing a physical presence and a voice to the child in the courtroom and ensuring that the appropriate questions were addressed on behalf of the child rather than serving the interests of another party. Some of the good practice points which emerged included active timetabling and case management assisted by judicial continuity and these are summarised by the author. See November [2005] Fam Law 899 for the full article.

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