The Welfare Checklist

When considering any issue concerning a child the Court must take into account the welfare checklist. This checklist must be considered in every case and details the following 7 factors:

  • The ascertainable wishes and feelings of the child concerned (in light of his or her age and understanding)
  • The physical, emotional and educational needs of the child
  • The effect on the child of any change in circumstances
  • The child’s age, sex, background and any relevant characteristics of the child
  • Any harm which the child has suffered or is at risk of suffering
  • How capable each of the parents is of meeting the child’s needs
  • The range of powers available to the Court

Even if an application to the Court is made the Court will only make an order if a Judge considers that an order would be better for the child than making no order at all.

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