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Family Law

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19 NOV 2008

The Children Act 1989 (Contact Activity Directions and Conditions: Financial Assistance) (England) Regulations 2008

19/11/2008 - These Regulations make provision enabling financial assistance to be paid in respect of an individual ordered or directed to undertake an activity that promotes contact with a child (regulation 3(1)).

To be eligible for such assistance it must have been determined that the individual is financially eligible for funded services in relation to family proceedings and the individual must have a certificate issued under the Funding Code approved under section 9 of the Access to Justice Act 1999(4) in relation to the family proceedings in which the court made the contact activity direction or imposed the contact activity condition. Where that is not the case an individual will need to establish he is likely to suffer financial hardship if he has to pay the charge or fee for the contact activity (regulation 3(2)).

Regulation 3(2) further provides that assistance may only be given if the contact activity is provided by an approved provider. An approved provider is approved by the Secretary of State or Welsh Ministers. Regulation 3(3) places a maximum limit on the amount of assistance that can be given per activity ordered or directed by the court. If the activity is a programme, class, counselling or guidance session of a kind that may address a person's violent behaviour, the maximum amount of assistance that may be given is £3,500. In respect of any other contact activity the maximum amount of assistance that may be given is £450.

Regulation 4 allows the payments of financial assistance to be made directly to the approved provider.

These Regulations shall come into force on 8 December 2008.

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