The Ministry of Justice has released statistics that show there has been a drop in the length of care and supervision proceedings.
In 2012, the average time between the date an application for a care or supervision order was lodged and the date of the first care, supervision, or other substantive order was 49 weeks. This had fallen from an average of 55 weeks in 2011.
It appears that the average is still falling and in the last 3 months of the year it had dropped to 45 weeks.
David Norgrove, chairman of the Family Justice Board said that he is “very pleased about what has been done”. He said: “the judiciary has really grasped this, as has the government. Local authorities and Cafcass were also firmly behind it … It is a real team effort.”
However, there is still some way to go to meet the 26-week deadline included in the Children and Families Bill. The 26-week time limit has been criticised by some family law professionals, but Munby LJ, in his recent View From the President’s Chambers has stated that the “deadline can be met, it must be met, it will be met”.
The report from the Ministry of Justice can be found here.
The Children and Families Bill can be found here.