The main authorities that deal with Family business are:
The Home Office
The Lord Chancellor’s Department (LCD)
The Department of Health (D.o.H).
The Home Office: This division has an overall responsibility for the Probation Service, a part of which was the Family Court Welfare Service (FCWS), This has now resolved to become CAFCASS (Children and Family Court Advisory Support Service www.cafcass.gov.uk/ ) and not directly under the Home Office.
The importance of this historically is that the FCWS having been derived from the Probation service tended to have staff trained in dealing with offenders, and fathers were considered as such, irrespective of their part in a separation. The FCWS was also considered the ‘Cinderella’ division of the Probation Service. The probation officers were in a ‘no-win’ situation in that whatever they did, one parent or the other would be unhappy, and they would get no thanks for whatever they achieved.
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