Q&As

Can a parent with parental responsibility object to their child, who is subject to an interim care order, being taken on holiday by their foster parents? Would the issue be dealt with by the local authority making an application to the court, or by the parent making an application for a prohibited steps order?

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Published on LexisPSL on 25/04/2019

The following Family Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Can a parent with parental responsibility object to their child, who is subject to an interim care order, being taken on holiday by their foster parents? Would the issue be dealt with by the local authority making an application to the court, or by the parent making an application for a prohibited steps order?

Where the court makes an interim care order, the local authority (LA) gains parental responsibility as it would under a full care order, but within the constraints of using it for the limited time period of the interim care order. The LA also has the power to determine the extent to which others with parental responsibility may exercise it, although that power may not be exercised unless the local authority is ‘…satisfied that it is necessary to do so in order to safeguard or promote the child's welfare’ (per section 33(3) of the Children Act 1989 (ChA 1989)).

Munby J (as he then was) said in Re A (Residential Assessment) (at para [1]) that:

‘It is a cardinal principle of the Children Act 1989 that once a care order has been made, whether interim or final, it is for the local authority, and not the court, to decide how to meet its parental responsibilities for the child. The decision-making power as to the care, residence and general welfare of the child is vested in the local authority, not in the court.’

The courts have also said that, when dealing with others with parental responsibility, the LA has a 'predomin

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