Wherever possible there should be consideration whether the child's best interests are met by supporting an application for a residence order, particularly in cases where children are at significant risk of becoming looked after or who are already looked after.
The decision to support and encourage alternative carers to make applications for residence in respect of children who are at risk of becoming looked will be based on an assessment of the child's needs and the carer's ability to meet those assessed needs, taking into account the child and his/her parent's wishes and the alternative courses of action available.
Processes for assessing and approving applicants who seek residence orders in respect of children who are looked after or who are at risk of becoming looked after should be as rigorous as arrangements made for assessing and approving other alternative carers.
A person in whose favour a residence order is made automatically acquires parental responsibility, but the order does not discharge the parental responsibility of others such as the child's parents.
Where parental responsibility is shared, each person may act independently of the other when meeting that responsibility.
Thus, although the making of a residence order may curb a parent's ability to act independently to the extent that in practice the day to day care of the child is largely controlled by the person with whom the child is living at least when the child is with the non-resident party, he or she may meet his full parental responsibility without the need to consult with the other person, except in respect of certain restrictions outlined below.
While the making of a residence order has the effect of conferring parental responsibility on the person to whom it is granted for the period while it remains in force, the degree of parental responsibility is limited to the extent that the person does not acquire the right to consent to adoption or to the making of an adoption order, or the right to appoint a Safeguarder.
Another effect of the making of a residence order is that no person may cause the child to be known by a new surname nor remove him/her from the Bailiwick of Guernsey without the written consent of every person who has parental responsibility for him/her or leave from the court.
A Residence Order comes to an end when a child reaches 18 unless the court specifies that it should end earlier or another order is made that discharges it.he granting of a residence order discharges a community parenting order, if one is in force.
A court may attach directions to a residence order which:
- Directs how it is to be carried out
- Impose conditions, which must be complied with
- Sets out that it is to have effect for a specified period
- Includes other provision as the court considers appropriate in the circumstances. Persons
Who May Apply For A Residence Order The following people may apply as of right:
- Parents or guardians
- The child's step parents
- Any person with whom the child has lived for a period of at least three years
- Any person who, where a residence order is in force, has the consent of each person in whose favour the order was made
- Any person who, where the child is in the care of the department, has the consent of the department
- Any person who has the consent of each person who has parental responsibility
- A relative of the child if the child has lived with the relative for a year immediately preceding the application
The Following People May Apply With The Leave of the Court:
- The child him/herself if the court is satisfied that he/she has sufficient understanding to make the application
- Any person with a genuine interest in the child's welfare
Where the person applying is not the child, the court in deciding whether or not to grant the leave will consider:
- The nature of the application
- The applicant's connection to the child
- Any risk of disruption to the child's life caused by the application
Where the child is looked after, the authority's plans for the child's future, and the wishes and feelings of the child's parents.
Restriction On Making Residence Orders
The Department cannot make an application for a Residence Order. A person who is, or was at any time within the last six months, a local authority foster parent of a child may not apply for leave to apply for a residence order with respect to the child unless:
- He/she has the consent of the Department
- He/she is a relative of the child
- The child has lived with this person for at least 3 years preceding the application.
Variation and Discharge Any person entitled to apply for a residence order can apply for its variation or discharge.
|Planning meeting held to consider plans to apply for residence order||Team manager||Completed||Within one month of request or recommendation|
|Plan endorsed at LAC review||Social worker||LAC Review of Arrangements||Within three months of planning meeting decision|
|Supporting application to Court setting out how child's welfare will be best promoted by the plan for residence and the extent to which eligibility criteria is met.||Child's social worker. Team Manager||CF1 and covering letter||Within three months of planning meeting decision|
|Obtain copy of the final Residence Order||Social worker - to obtain copy of the Residence Order from the Greffe - email Jennie.Brehaut@gov.gg||Cope of Residence Order||Within three months|
|Recommendation of adoption and permanency panel to be approved formally by the department||Director||Computer||Within one month of panel meeting|
|A Returning Home LAC Review to be held. (To ensure all necessary processes have been followed/are in place, including consideration for Child In Need support and/or Child Protection Conference etc)|
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