District Judge Glover, who is based in Dartford County Court, has recently advised that he often orders that families who allege that the absent parent misuses alcohol should now utilise breath-testing kits prior to and at the end of a contact period with their child.

A number of parents allege that the absent parent uses alcohol to excess to prevent the child having contact with them. This could sometimes lead to a lengthy period of time where CAFCASS have to look into the situation and contact will not take place in the meantime. District Judge Glover has stated that rather than the child missing out on a meaningful relationship with the absent parent, these breath-testing kits should be used for a temporary period of time. These are to provide the resident parent with reassurance that alcohol is not being consumed prior to or during the time spent with the child. Alternatively, if this device is used for a period of 6-12 months, the Court may reach the conclusion that the allegation of alcohol misuse is no longer an issue and remove this restriction from the contact itself.

So, rather than the police using such devices for driving offences etc., the Courts may now impose the parent spending time with the child to engage in such measures to see their child.

If you’re faced with similar allegations and you wish to see your child or you’re concerned for your child spending time with their absent parent due to alcohol issues, please contact one of our offices and ask to speak with a member of the family and children team.

For further information on Breath-Test Devices in Children Proceedings please contact a member of the Ringrose Law family team. We have offices across Lincolnshire and Newark in Lincoln, Boston, Grantham, Sleaford, Spalding & Newark.


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