When a court grants a Care Order, the Local Authority is given responsibility of looking after the child. There are circumstances where a parent may disagree with the court’s decision and seek to challenge it.
If you believe that the judge placing your child under the care of the local authority was wrong either about the facts of your case or how those facts were applied to the law, you may appeal the decision.
Where your case was before a Magistrates judge, you will not need permission to appeal, however, you will have to set out the reasons for appealing.
Decisions a District or Circuit judge, require a permission of appeal to be sought by either the judge at the final hearing or the Court of Appeal.
Should the Court of Appeal refuse your request to appeal without a hearing, you can make a further application within 7 days, seeking to have your case considered again at a hearing.
Permission to appeal will be granted where the court considers that:-
- Your appeal will have a real prospect of being successful;
- There are compelling reasons why your appeal should be heard.
There is a strict time limit to be adhered to and the appeal will have to sent to the court within 21 days of the decision, unless the first court imposes and earlier deadline on you.
Appeals against an interim care order or supervision order have a deadline of 7 days.
You will have to convince the court why the decision of the first judge was wrong, this must be set out very clearly in your notice of appeal (reasons of appealing). Did the judge ignore the law? Did he apply incorrect law? Did he rely on untrue things in your case.
The previous judge is likely to have reached an incorrect decision if he applied the wrong law, relied on something irrelevant or failed to consider a relevant matter in your case.
Where the court grant you permission and consider your appeal, the judge can:-
1. Set aside or vary the order of the previous judge;
2. Refer any application or determination to a lower court;
3. Order a new hearing;
4. Make Order of payment of interest or cost;
5. Or, agree with the decision of the previous judge.
If you are have been granted Legal Aid and your application for permission to appeal has been refused by the appeal court without a hearing, you and your representative will be required to send a copy of the reasons the appeal court gave for refusing you permission to the Legal Services Commission as soon as possible. The court will require confirmation that this has been done if you are requesting that your case be reconsidered at a hearing.