Putting children and young people first in the family courts


What happens after I receive a letter?

This video is aimed at grown-ups, to help them understand the work we will usually do before the first hearing. It explains the work we might be asked to do by the court after someone has made an application for a child arrangements order to determine where a child will live and/or who a child will spend time with. When the court asks Cafcass to carry out this work, Cafcass will usually send a letter to each party: this video supplements that letter, with real Cafcass practitioners talking about their work we do to provide the court with the information it needs to make a safe decision.

(Please note: Schedule two letters mentioned in this video are now referred to as Safeguarding letters)

While we've tried to include information that is relevant to most of cases following an application about arrangements for children it is really important to note that every case is different. Sometimes, like when an application has been made at short notice, or where there are safety concerns, we might not do everything that is set out this video.

If you have any concerns about the work that we have carried out before the First Hearing then it is really important that you let the court know.

These types of cases are often referred to as 'private law' cases. During 2014 we are hoping to produce similar resources to explain the work we do in cases where a Local Authority has made an application to the family court following concerns about a child's safety. These cases are often referred to as 'care' cases.


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