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Family Proceedings Courts must formulate their own reasons, not be spoon-fed them

Date:13 FEB 2014

There has been a fairly widespread practice that Local Authorities have been asked by the FPC to draft Facts and Reasons in cases that are agreed or not opposed. That has been somewhat vulnerable since the Court of Appeal decision in the civil case of Crinion v IG Markets [2013] EWCA Civ 587 where a judgment appeared to be lifted wholesale from one party's written submissions with some minor alterations.

In Re NL (A Child) (Appeal: Interim Care Order: Facts and Reasons) [2014] EWHC 270 (Fam) [2014] 2 FLR (forthcoming) Pauffley J had this issue highlighted to her and strongly deprecated the practice.

'It is difficult to view the Justices as having been independent and impartial if as happened here they simply adopted the local authority's analysis of what their Findings and Reasons might comprise.' (para [68])