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Formerly entitled the Ancillary Relief Handbook this is the first resort for thousands of...
‘Where the police need to interview a child who is already a ward of court, an application must be made for permission for the police to do so.’
‘the asserted principle or rule that judicial consent is required before the police can interview a ward of court, is impossible to reconcile [with other established principles].’
‘in significant part is … simply wrong.’
‘a pressing need for paragraph 5 of PD12D to be considered as a matter of urgency by the Family Procedure Rule Committee’, adding that ‘[r]adical surgery will probably be required.’
‘5.1 Case law establishes that:
1 There is no requirement for the police or any other agency carrying out statutory powers of investigation or enforcement to seek the permission of the court to interview a child who is a ward of court. The fact that a child is a ward of court does not affect the powers and duties of the police or other statutory agencies in relation to their investigations. Provided that the relevant statutory requirements are complied with, the police or other agencies are under no duty to take any special steps in carrying out their functions in relation to a child who is a ward of court.
2 Where a child has been interviewed by the police in connection with contemplated criminal proceedings and the child is, or subsequently becomes, a ward of court, the permission of the court is not required for the child to be called as a witness in the criminal proceedings.
For a full review of the relevant case law and principles, see Re a Ward of Court  EWHC 1022 (Fam).
5.2 Where the police or other statutory agencies take any action in relation to a child who is a ward of court, the person(s) with day to day care and control of the child, or where applicable the local authority, should bring the relevant information to the attention of the court as soon as practicable. Where wardship proceedings are continuing, any children’s guardian appointed for the child must be informed of the situation by the other parties.’James Munby