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Special guardianship

Posted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:52 pm
by Tomk19

My children were subject to a special guardianship order in 2014. This was mainly due to the mother and alcohol/drugs and I then got custody of them but I did struggle to care for them at such a young age with no support and I was very young myself (no excuse I know) they now live with the merternal aunty and uncle and I have the children over night ever other weekend and have a good relationship with the aunty. They would never want to let the children go back to anyone else other than them. Aunt has now been sleeping with someone else and there marriage is breaking down. First of all I have asked if I could get something in writing to say I have the children every other weekend so if any fall out ever happened they cannot use the kids as weapons and they have agreed to this so how do I go about getting this sorted with minimum fuss as possible ? Is it just as easy way getting a solicitor writing up a letter and them signing it? Also my situation is much much different to what it was back in 2014, I still and always have had a full time job am in a steady relationship with step children and have a stable home and family network and do believe now that the children could be returned to my care and in my personal opinion and the opinion of maternal grandmother and my mum and dad would provide a much better up bringing of the children so what would my chances be of getting the children back on a full times bases? Or is this just not possible.

Re: Special guardianship

Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2017 3:38 pm
by Suzie, FRG Adviser
Dear Tom19

Welcome to the parents discussion forum.

My name is Suzie, online adviser at Family Rights Group.

I see from your post that you are considering whether your children would be better off living with you as have turned things around in your life and feel able to care for your children now.

Have you discussed your position with the special guardians? It may be that they agree that you are in a much better place and would not oppose the children returning to you. It might be helpful to have that discussion.

The special guardians are able to agree with you that the children can agree to contact but if you want something binding it might be better to seek an order from the court. If there is already an order for contact then this can be varied and if not you can ask for a new child arrangement order for contact. Please see our advice sheet about what special guardianship means for birth parents for more information.

If you believe that you are able to care for your children now, then it is also possible for you to apply to the court for permission to discharge the special guardianship order. It will be for the court to consider whether it would be in the children’s best interests for the special guardianship order to be discharged and a child arrangement order made in your favour.

As any application you make would be private law, I think you should contact Coram Children’s Legal Centre (Child Law Advice) on 0300 330 5480 for advice on how you can pursue an application.

I hope you find this helpful.

Best wishes


Re: Special guardianship

Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:47 pm
by Tomk19
Hi suzie,

Thank you for your reply. The special guardians would not even think about returning them for a few reasons. They have now started to call the children there own and allow them to call them mum & dad I obviously don't like this but the kids call me dad when they see me so I don't say anything as I don't want the children getting caught up in the middle. Also the uncle is on long term sick & aunty has never worked so they would never give up the special guardianship money up as I have seen what was granted at court and it is an average persons monthly wage. I worry going to court for full custody as o have nothing in writing to say I can have contact with the children as the court order says aunty & uncle to arrange contact. So really this is why I would like something in writing about my contact so If there is a fallout the kids cannot be used as weapons as I believe the relationship me and the children have it would damage them to not see me they love coming to my house every other weekend.
Aunty & uncle have agreed to sign something to say I am ok to have children over night ever other weekend so I am unsure if i need to go to court to get this or can a solicitor just draw something up for us both to sign.
if cercumstances were great at home (with me) with absolutely no problems is it likely to get the children back or am I wasting my time. I love my children to absolute bits and want them to be brought up where they are around people working and good role models. I do believe the pressure of the my ex girlfriend (there mother) coming round kicking off etc and lack of available support and being at a young age was the reason I was not able to continue to look after the children but my life has done a full 360 since then and feel I would and am currently be an amazing dad to my children.

Re: Special guardianship

Posted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 6:33 pm
by Suzie, FRG Adviser
Dear Tomk19

Thank you for your post.

I would ask you to refer to our advice sheet entitled Special guardianship: what does it mean for birth parents? I think it answers your questions.

However, you have said that when the SGO was made, contact with the children was left to the discretion of the special guardians; and they have agreed to sign an agreement. Perhaps it may be wise to hold them to this agreement and to have another discussion with them about the possibility of the children coming to live with you in the future; starting with a couple of weekends a month (or every other month) to begin with – or by spending a few days with you over the next school half term holidays.

If the special guardians do not agree then do have a read of our advice sheet about child arrangements orders.

I hope this helps.

Best wishes