Sally Daulton appears in the Court of Appeal in Re T (a child) (Adoption Hearing: Involvement of Applicants) [2024] Civ 189

7th May 2024

Sally Daulton (representing Cornwall Council) appeared in the Court of Appeal in Re T (a child) (Adopting Hearing: Involvement of Applicants) [2024] Civ 189 on 30 January 2024.  Judgment was handed down and released to the National Archives on 14 March 2024. 

The appellants, prospective adopters, were litigants in person who appealed the decisions of the court:

  • refusing them permission to attend the adoption hearing
  • finding that they needed the court’s permission to obtain a transcript of that hearing
  • refusing them permission to obtain such a transcript.

The Local Authority supported the prospective adopters’ appeal and outlined the current practice, in which the Local Authority has been treated as the de facto applicant in adoption proceedings.  

The prospective adopters’ appeal was unanimously upheld on all three grounds by the President of the Family Division Sir Andrew McFarlane, Lord Justice Lewison and Lady Justice King. 

In addition, the President:

  • urged each local adoption centre to review its current practice, and expressed his intention to invite Mrs Justice Judd, as chair of the President’s Public Law Working Group, to conduct a review of the 2018 President’s Guidance
  • reminded all advocates of the obligation to provide a note or memorandum of all hearings, including the outcome of short hearings where no formal judgment is given.
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