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Care proceedings taking 33 weeks on average

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The latest Cafcass annual report shows that on average the duration of care proceedings in Jan-March 2014 was 33 weeks.

The Annual Report and Accounts 2013/14 from Cafcass, the body that represents children in family court cases, shows that it is making progress towards reducing the duration of care proceedings to its 26 weeks target.

In the last quarter of the year, eight out of 40 Designated Family Judge (DFJ) areas were already completing applications in less than the 26 week target introduced as part of the Children and Families Act 2014 on 22nd April 2014.

The reduction in application duration has led to a decrease in the stock of open care cases from 10,439 in March 2013 to 7,950 in March 2014.

Manchester’s Care figures

The average duration based on all applications completed in the year 2013-2014 in the Manchester DJF area was 36. In the last quarter care proceedings were taking one week longer than the national average at 34 weeks.

The report sets out the average care application duration in calendar weeks by DFJ area. This shows that by the final quarter of the year (Jan to March 2014), the national average was 33 weeks. The average for the whole year was 36 weeks. Within the DFJ areas there was wide variation: in Truro the average for the year was 19 weeks whereas in Guildford it was 47 weeks.

Contact Pearson Solicitors Family Law Care Team

Pearson Solicitors has a specialist team dealing in Child Welfare & Cases Involving Children. To speak to a Care solicitor, please call 0161 785 3500 or email

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

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