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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 35053
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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Without going into any main details: Although there is NOT

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Without going into any main details:
Although there is NOT one single piece of evidence from police, doctors or local authorities etc. or anyone that I have ever caused a single bit of harm to my ex-wife or my son, a judge believed my lying ex-wife's and her lying supposed witnesses to refuse my court application for contact with my son!

I was also told by my McKenzie friend at the hearing that this decision from the court cannot be overturned, EVER, even though it is a pack of lies and he advised me therefore to agree to an indirect access order, which I did and of course my ex-has already not held to that courts direction so that I have to go back to court for this but I can do nothing else!

I have complained to Cafcass, who have just brushed my evidence based facts under the carpet as the Cafcass officer deleted emails from her system, yet still they closed the complaint, stating that it's a on step complaints procedure.

I have put it to the ombudsman and they are investigating this but apparently, they only advise the likes of Cafcass of what they should do in the future but they don't actually do anything even if they see that the report from the Cafcass officer was bias etc.

The judge, on me informing him of the lies by the Cafcass officer simply told me that it was my problem to take up with Cafcass, can this really be the reality of our family courts and is there anything I can do to get contact with my son?
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
How old is the child and when was the Order made?
What did the CAFCASS officer actually do wrong?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello Clare,

Thank you for your' reply.


My son will be 6 on the 20th June.


The application for contact was rejected and the order was made in November of 2013.


The Cafcass officer did not follow the first order of the court to arrange contact for me and my son.


The Cafcass officer deleted email/s between myself and herself to hide her initial intentions, after meeting me for my interview, to arrange contact.


The actual reason for the Cafcass Officer doing this in my opinion is very clearly because she had not managed to get the work done as she had been instructed from the court.


The cafcass officer in her report used a self-admission of mine that I had asked my doctor for therapy after getting out of the abuse I underwent in the marriage from my ex-wife.


The Cafcass officer reported to the court that I had admitted undergoing counselling and as I had broke down "openly sobbing" in this interview, when she asked me to disclose an incident of the abuse I underwent from my ex-wife, (this was the very first time I had actually spoken out to anyone about the abuse I underwent), that I was emotionally fragile and therefore she advised the court to have me further assessed psychologically before allowing contact between my son and I even though my doctor had also made a clear statement to the court that I was of no risk of harm to anyone at all.


The Cafcass did not complete any REAL investigations towards my applications nor had she once looked at the wealth of physical evidence I offered her in the interview as he had noted that she didn't need it and she would get things arranged.


The Cafcass officer omitted and twisted certain facts of our interview to support her recommendation to the court.


At the second hearing; I informed the judge of these issues and he simply told me that it was my problem to sort with Cafcass even though the court instructs and makes decisions that are very heavily reliant upon the Cafcass officers recommendations.


There are other issues towards the court process, which became terribly bias after the Cafcass officers report but in essence as I attended the final hearing, the judge ignored the fact that I had requested the court receive either a copy of the Cafcass officers notes or a recording of the interview if it existed so that I could prove my statements towards the interview with Cafcass officer, the court ignored the fact that my ex-wife had made 2 absolute statements to the judge in the first hearing that the only reason my ex-wife was withholding contact was due to my supposed inconsistency, when the judge asked my-ex-wife if there were any reasons for withholding contact from me and my son. My ex-wife had, when I informed her that I was taking her to court as she was being very obstructive towards me seeing my son regularly, threatened me that she would make up spurious allegations of me supposedly being abusive towards her and my son, which she immediately dropped when the judge asked her for her reasons for withholding contact because I warned her of perjury, upon which my ex-wife confirmed to the judge TWICE as the judge asked her this again after asking the first time due to her making these initial spurious allegations.


I shall not go on but there are other such shocking issues that occurred but basically, once my ex-wife knew that the Cafcass officer was supportive, she again brought back the spurious allegations for the final (3rd) hearing.

Was there a Finding of Fact hearing at all?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Good morning Clare,

Yes I believe the 3rd and final hearing was the fact finding hearing.


The second judge prior to this final hearing, apart from being in the court 40 minutes alone with my ex-wife as she received a letter which gave a time 1 hour before me, by the courts mistake, this judges very first statement to me after clarifying that I was not late and that is was the courts mistake, he said and I quote "you will have read the Cafcasd report so I suppose you are dropping your applications now" and nkt in a profrssional way, to which I was not only shocked at the fact that he had sat with my ex-wife for 40 minutes totally alone as the Cafcass officer had also received the same 1 hour late start time as me, I could only answer with, absolutely not.


The only answer I can give you is yes, it was the fact finding hearing but as the Cafcass officer had not completed any real fact finding to the truths I gave her, the judge only had my word against the lying witnesses of my ex-wife and the Cafcass officer who clearly stood against me as I had also made complaint about her, previous to her filing her report, which she deleted from the Cafcasd system but of which I held a copy of the email, which I presented to Cafcass head office in my one step complaint.

May I ask what makes you think that the Judge actually even saw your ex during that period?
How long was the Fact Finding listed for?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

That were sat in the court room together the whole time and they had clearly pretty much discussed everything, the judge initially didn't know that he/the court had made the timing mistake for which he begrudgingly apologised for by saying, OK sorry sit down and simply proceeded.


It was listed for a full day but the judge took several cases before so we sat until lunchtime and then I was in being questioned for about 45 minutes, lunch and the it was me to question no fear much but it was a nightmare with the judge badgering me to move on, even though he could clearly see that this was too difficult for me as he had refused to allow my McKenzie friend to ask the questions and the ex-wifes barrister was intimidating etc. It was a disgracefully unaceptable situation, which the judge was enabling even though he had read my statements and knew of the abuse I underwen, he did not give me one moments benefit of the doubt and he was even going through the statements to prepare his decision statement well before the hearing had ended so that he took only a few minutes to prepare his decision if that makes sense, which additionally unnerved me.

Were you not aware that your MacKenzie friend could not speak for you; and if he took cases before you then what makes you think that he had discussed anything with your ex?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes the McKenzie friend noted that this may be the case but due to his experience and the situation he felt that a judge may very possibly grant him to speak and I couldn't afford a solicitor at the time.


The ex speaking with the judge was in the second hearing not the fact finding but my feelings from the outset of the third judge were that the second judge had made his notes and comments for the third judge, I cannot confirm this of course but rather I could only go off his demeanor, the way in which he managed the hearing and of course his decision as even when I noted the facts to him of the first hearing and the retraction of the ex wife's initial spurious allegations he simply brushed over them with, "well I'm sure..." with something I could not understand as he was flustered at this and when I noted the initial judges decision for contact after the ex-wifes retraction he again filled with the papers looking but again, "well..." and then just moved on after a few money's of fluster.


The McKenzie friend said that he had never lived anything like this ever and he said that he was shocked at how this entire case had gone.

What was the nature of the finding that was made (highlights)
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare,

Sorry I was responding on a phone screen so it was a challenge with my eyesight Frown


I'm in the office now,the direction was:


1. The father's application for direct contact is refused.


2. The father agrees to make no further applications for a 3 year period as of a 91/4.


3. The father can send letters, photos, presents etc. directly through the mother and the mother is to support the child to respond and the mother is to keep the father informed of updates etc..



What was the nature of the allegations that were found against you (type)
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Well there was nothing found against me as in the courts decision in writing.


It was more of a disgraceful dressing down of, I believe that you are controlling as your ex-wife has stated, because you were aggressive in your' questioning of the witnesses of your ex-wife and I believed the witnesses of your ex-wife. The additional ridiculous thing was, not one of these supposed witnesses gave one single supposed incident, neither in court or their written statements as to where I had supposedly either harmed my ex-wife nor my son, they were more generally, yes he is aggressive and controlling. One witness who stated that he had witnessed me being aggressive towards my son, I asked him, where did this happen, when did this happen, exactly what did I do and so forth, even a child, never mind a judge could easily understand that this was not only a clear lie but also a PHYSICAL impossibility, yet it was just ignored by the judge, again I can only say that whatever the 3rd judge wrote must have convinced him to make his decision no matter what was said on that day.


I admitted calling my ex-wife a monster, which very sadly she was to me and that was the worst I did.


If anyone had ever looked at the evidence, physical, then they would have clearly seen what had gone on and also that these lies were a physical impossibility to be true.

Looking at the court order doe sit have the words "by consent" on it anywhere?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I do not have it in front of me unfortunately, I would have to go home and look at it if it is very important but, I do feel confident that it says something like, the the father agrees... and the mother agrees...

Can you check tonight please?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes I shall, I can grab it now if you like as I live only 5 minutes away or I can give you the case number XXXXX i believe the decisions can be viewed online?

Tonight will be fine
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare,

I popped home for lunch.


It does not show "by consent" is says mother and father agree as to the cards etc. And the other part Satan's " The court orders and the father does not oppose the making of an order..." the ex-wifes had if course not done so in the very first instance as the court ordered and she had moved to I do not even know where.

Thank you
Unfortunately it is now too late to appeal the outcome of the Finding of Fact hearing - or the restriction on applying for anything other than an enforcement order before November 2016
However in November 2016 you can once again apply for a Child Arrangement Order that allows you to see your child - and between now and then you can work to ensure that the outcome is the one that you wish
If you have not done so already you should provide his school with a set of stamped addressed envelopes so that you can get copies of all the reports and newsletters.
I full understand that you have done nothing wrong - but the court will need some evidence that you have "changed" and accordingly you could consider doing an Anger Management course - not because you need to but because it will look good to the court
I am sorry as I know this is not what you wish to hear but sadly this is the position that you are in
Please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare,

Thank you for your confirmation even though it's far from what I would hope for, it's a reality I have to live with.


I wrote to the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office and they replied with:


I write in response to your online complaint form dated 12 November 2013.

I must inform you that the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO) has rejected your complaint. This is because your complaint does not contain an allegation of misconduct on the part of District Judge Howard or District Judge Kramer and therefore we are unable to look into your complaint.

Rule 8 of the Judicial Discipline Rules 2013 requires that your complaint meets this criterion if it is to be considered as valid.

Your complaint is about the decisions made by the Judges, the way the case was managed and the evidence considered or ignored. These are not matters which this office can consider.


Additionally with regards XXXXX XXXXX complaint about District Judge Kramer, I have found that had your complaint not been rejected it would have fallen outside the 3 month time limit for making a complaint to this office.

The JCIO cannot investigate complaints about court staff. Any complaints of this matter should be addressed to the Operations Manager at the court concerned.

Complaints about CAFCASS should be referred, in writing, to 6th Floor Sanctuary Buildings, Great Smith Street, LondonSW1P 3BT. Tel: 0844(NNN) NNN-NNNN/p>


I also complained immediately to the court after the hearing and they just advised me to contact the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office and appologised for the mess up with the court timing mistake.


As you know I also complained to Cafcass and they just closed shop, it was brick wall after brick wall.


Is there anything else at all I can do other than you have advised?

Sadly no there is no other way - and the more you try the more toy play into your ex' hands.
Step back - regroup = stay in contact with the school and jump through hoops to show that you have "changed" when the time comes
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Many thanks indeed for your' direct and very clear advice.