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Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34105
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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Child Contact CaseWhilst trying to take legal steps to

Resolved Question:

Child Contact Case
Whilst trying to take legal steps to resume contact for my child
Mum removed my child to Spain without any notification or consent
She contacted the Judge to outline her situation in an email
The judge shared parts of the content of this letter but told us that we couldn't see it as she has asked for her address to be witheld. We suggested redaction but he said whats the point hes told us everything that was in it.
He then proceeded to persuade me not to take criminal action( which would have meant immediate repatriation of my child) but to consider the childs stability (she had just started school and had been in the school one week by that point)
To cut a long story short Mum then repatriated my child in England (blaming legal action for this move)
As my child was now in school in the UK (and again in need of stability) I requested a stop order and a proper leave to remove hearing was scheduled.
Cutting more story out this took place in August 2014
On the positive side I had a CAFCASS report supporting my position and the CAFCASS officer stood up to this in court putting mum in a difficult position
the original document recieved by the Judge was revealed and contained allegations of 'years of physical abuse' which are completely untrue and therfore have no evidential support. In fact this position was contradicted by testimony given by Mum to the CAFCASS officer. This did not stop the judge from continuing to work overtime for Mum and he was not satisfied until he got the words he needed from all witnesses to support a judgement for leave to remove. He conveniently rebranded all her obvious lies in court court as reasonable errors and mistakes - and took her constant crying as reasonable evidence of distress
Mums testimony in her statement and given aurally was 90% lies
In paticular she made a fraudulent documentary presentation relating to where she was going to live
She also changed her story from when she was justifying her illegal abduction to say that my child had been living a year longer out in spain than previously known and in the same school consistently for 18 months
She also lied about how she would support contact and visits she would make to england to make the child available
My position was that Mum had been living/working seasonaly in spain (instability and lack of real connection she was as much living in england as in spain over the period) and that due to her history she could not be trusted to support contact (and that she had moved to spain to ensure the end of contact)
Since the hearing it has become evident and I have documentary evidence to prove that she knowingly fraudulently presented a false address to court.
That she exaggerated my daughters presence at school - school recorded show her being enrolled and removed on a seasonal basis
Also her Barrister knowingly rewrote her statement bridging the gap between truth and lies. Her Barrister also lied for her regarding false allegations made to School teachers (which the teacher could be ordered to testify too) regarding violence against my daughter
Predictably the contact order has broken and mum has not lived up to the specific promises made in court
I have had to take her to court in Spain because of this (I am still awaiting judgement - the court moves very slow out there)
In the meantime contact (SKYPE) has been stopped altogether
It is clear I can never work with this woman towards healthy contact
As things stand she has essentially achieved the aims of her initial abduction
It is incredinly difficult to deal with the contact issues in Spain
Can I get contact another way by either having this judgement set aside in some way or by taking action for perjury
If so how do I take action forward - what kind of solicitor is needed for this?
I cannot consult my solicitors on this asIt was also very clear that my own solicitors (legal aid) were only too happy to go along with the judges manipulation of process to facilitate mum. I fell out with my solicitors regarding the defence/bullying of me, their client out of checking the wording of the arrangements/order/ and sloth like approach and lack of communication regarding the appeal (which eventually they ruled out (this was prior to the evidence above being available)
If I ever try and talk to them they just say the case is closed
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
When did she actually move to Spain and how old is the child now?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare

Thank-you

Ella is 5 Years Old

the final understanding is this:

Mum took her to spain jun 2012 -dec 2012

and then to spain again Jul 2013 - dec 2013

and then she was given official leave to remove aug 2014

and has be in spain since sep 2014

Ian

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Did you not consider an appeal at the time?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Appeal :

After the first day of the hearing my Solicitor said to me well you can relax at the very least you can get an appeal out of this

He said that the judge had walked into a number of huge elephant traps

He said that there are strict rules about the amount of time a judge can be questioning for and against

The judge questioned the CAFCASS officer for roughly one hour putting to him different combinations about how contact could work if leave to remove was granted

The cafcass officer stood up to this pressure and was adamant that contact would fail (as it has) and that this would be detrimental to Ella as her relationship with me was so important. I believe that what he meant was that my relationship was important because mother is and always will be incapable of supporting ellas emotional needs

The judge continued to show a very clear lack of impartiallity throughout the hearing in many ways

I personally had seen the hopelessness of this hearing with this judge and mentally during my questioning was looking forward to the appeal

I arranged to speak to my solicitor regarding this the Monday following the judgement

I didn't hear from him and called him and had to carry on calling him for the next 3 weeks without even getting a message from him- eventually the day before the deadline he said that unfortunately with the way the judge had structured his verdict that he'd covered his back (I only seemed to get this conversation because I complained to one of the trainee solicitors about his conduct) - and we wouldn't even get an appeal past the legal aid commission - he spent a deal of the phone call soft soaping me and saying how much he liked me

It was clearly too late to consult any other solicitor

I'll be honest with you Clare - this experience has been awful and I regularly wake up with nightmares about it

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
It does seem that you were badly let down - frankly I agree with you it sounds as though an appeal would indeed have been worthwhile - but sadly it is too late for this option now.
It is not too late to consider a formal complaint to the SRA about the way that you were treated by your solicitor
http://www.sra.org.uk/home/home.page
The only way forward now is via the Spanish Courts - UNLESS she comes back to the Uk
I have tried to consider all possible options to reopen proceedings here in the UK - but sadly I cannot do so.
It would be worth speaking to the Charity Reunite
www.reunite.org
who MAY have some other ideas about the position in Spain
Do please ask if you need further details
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare

Just to be clear - are you saying that I don't have a perjury case?

Regards

ian

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Trying to bring a private prosecution for perjury is simply going to cost a lot of money and will not effect the position with regard to the ongoing residence and contact.
I KNOW that this is not fair - but it is the position that you are in.
On that basis wasting your money on such a case instead of saving it for when she returns to the Uk seems like a bad choice - however personally satisfying
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

So what your saying is: If perjury was proven the judgement wouldn't then be revisited, overturned or set aside.

(apart from personal satisfaction there is also the character assassination aspect which is helpful in any ongoing contact hearing - she hasn't stopped lying you see)

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
That is correct - IF you were successful - and sadly it is not as straightforward as proving the information was incorrect - it will not change anything.
If you can prove that the information she gave was wrong then you can use that in a further hearing anyway
Clare
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