Section 47 Reports
Sometimes, when a family is engaged in a Court process, perhaps because of a separation or an issue regarding custody or access, the Court can request a Section 47 Assessment / Report or a Section 32 Assessment and Report be carried out, in order to determine what the best interest of the child or children are.
In carrying out such an assessment, I am very mindful of what a difficult process this can be for parents as well as for young people and I would engage therapeutically with families to ensure that everyone’s voice is heard. My background in Systemic practice means that I am very aware of family dynamics and how each person in a family can be influenced by and influential of other family members. My expertise in the area of attachment makes it possible for me to assess how a young person’s attachment can best be protected and enhanced by decisions made by the Court.
Family life can be difficult when the family are involved in litigation. However, I feel it is possible to work in collaboration with families in order to ascertain the best interest of the children, even when tensions and disagreements are present. I know that collaborative practice is what will work best for the child and I know also that parents want what’s best for the children too. Going through the Court can be a stressful time for families. That does not in any way undermine the potential for families to work together with me in order to best protect the welfare of children.
Here’s a link that you may find useful if you are looking for further information on section 47 reports: http://www.irishstatutebook.ie/eli/1995/act/26/section/47/enacted/en/html
Here’s a link that you may find useful if you are looking for further information on Section 32 reports
I heartily commend the work of Brian (via www.changes.ie), whom I have come to know and greatly respect for his extraordinarily thorough diagnostic, report-writing and witness services. The highest appropriate compliment I can pay him, without myself breaching the in camera rule, is recalling a case where I was greatly astounded by his work. I was for a non-custodial parent who managed to have Brian appointed to a difficult case. His display of integrity, impartiality and open-mindedness to the nth degree is something that left a deep impression on me.