What is a child Contact Order?
A child Contact Order entitles the person who the child resides with to allow contact with someone else.
Contact Orders are made under s8 Children Act 1989 to require the person(s) with whom a child lives to allow that child to visit, stay or have contact with a person named in the order. Orders continue until the child is 16 years. So long as the child is not under the care of a local authority, the following people can apply for a Contact Order:
- the parent or guardian of a child (s10(4)(a));
- anyone who holds a Residence Order in respect of that child (s10(4)(b));
- a married stepparent of the child where the child lived with the stepparent as a child of the family (s10(5)(a));
- anyone with whom the child has lived for at least three years (this period need not have been continuous but must have been recent) (s10(5)(b));
- anyone who:
- a) where there is already a Residence Order in place has the consent of every one who holds that order or
- b) who has the consent of the local authority where the chid is in their care or
- c) has the consent of every one who has parental responsibility for the child.