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Enforcing a Child Arrangements Order

When it comes to the well-being and care of a child, the child's best interest is paramount. When the parents
or those with parental responsibility are unable to agree to the child arrangements, the court can make a Child Arrangement Order.


The order can be given with regards to whom the child is to spend time with or whom the child can stay with and any other unresolved issues regarding the care and pertaining of the child.

The issue of enforcement arises when the child arrangement order is not being obeyed by the one on whom the order is made.

The child arrangement order which also regulates who the child is to have contact is generally made under the provisions of section 8 of the Children Act,1989. 

Where a parent or a party fails to acknowledge and follow the arrangements as made in the order, the aggrieved party may apply to the court for the enforcement of the provisions of the order. This order is provided for under section 11j of the children Act of 1989.

If you find yourself in such a situation and you wish to apply to the court for the child arrangement enforcement order, we at Court Help Limited can help you out here. We are a specialist family law firm with specialist expertise in complex children law matters. We assist the litigant in person with preparing the enforcement application.

A lot of questions surround this particular topic and its procedures. Below are some questions often asked with answers to them to clarify you.

FAQ on Enforcement of Child Arrangements Order

Q. Who can apply for a Child Arrangements Order?

A. Fathers and mothers can apply for the order. Also, parents who adopt a child can apply for a child arrangements order.

Every other person must approach the court to be granted permission to make the application. This is also done by way of application to the court.

However, the grandparents of a child or a person with whom the child has stayed together for more than three years for the last five years may apply to the court for a Child Arrangements Order.

Child Arrangement Orders Enforcement

Q. What are the key elements of a Child Arrangements Orders that generally are bough to court for enforcement?


A. The court usually can make an order with regards to the following.

  • Whom the child will live with

  • With whom and when the child spends time

  • Specific Issues

  • Schooling

  • Pick up and drop back arrangements

  • Who, what when and where about the living and contact with the child

Q. Is a child arrangement order legally binding?


A.  A child arrangement order is recognised by law and therefore is legally binding. There is always a "warning notice" in a child arrangement order which provides for what might ensue from non-compliance with the terms of the order. 

Q. What do I do if my ex is breaking the court order and not allowing me to meet my children?


A. If after all attempts to resolve amicably, your ex still prevents you from meeting your children as against the court order, you can go ahead and file an action against the party. The defaulting party is said to be in contempt of court and the court does not take the disobedience to it's order lightly. By so doing, you will be asking the court for the enforcement of it's order.

The court does take note of the fact that an order of the court has been made after due consideration and the order shall be followed.

The court may take a strong view that the non-compliance of the order may equate to the defaulting parent not acting in the best interests of teh child.


Q. How long is a Child Arrangements order last?


A. The arrangements provided for in the Child order stays legally binding upon all parties until the child turns 16. However, where the arrangement order is one as to where a child should live and when the order will proceed until the child turns 18. Nevertheless, these are subject to the provisions of the order. This is in congruence to Section 91(10) of the Children Act 1989


Q. What is the C79 form application?


A. Application for a child enforcement order is usually made on Form C79.


Q. How can a child order be enforced?


A. The topic of enforcing a child arrangement order comes in when a parent or a party to the arrangement fails to comply with it. Upon the application to the court for a child enforcement order, an initial hearing is fixed where the court considers the reason for the breach in question. 


If the court concludes that a breach of an order has occurred without a justifiable reason, further steps will be taken to enforce it. Get in touch with us to guide you through this.


Q. Who can apply for the enforcement of a child arrangement order?


A. The person in whose favour the child arrangement order has been made and has rights in the order can apply for its enforcement.


Q. How do I stop my partner from molesting and assaulting my children and myself?


A. If your partner is an abuser who is in the habit of harassing, or intimidating you or carrying out any form of abuse whether physical or mental on you or your children, you should get a non-molestation order.


The order forbids your partner or whosoever from molesting you or your children as the case may be. Usually, the order comes with a provision that prevents the abuser from coming in contact with the person who has requested the order.


Contact us for more information on this and quickly obtain our legal services with regards to it, visit our website page on Non-Molestation Order. Visit


Q. How do I stop the domestic abuse I face?


A. If you are a victim of domestic insult in whatever way, an occupation order will help put an end to this. An occupation order is a special kind of injunction which the court grants providing for who should reside in a house and who should not.


It can also provide for places in particular in a home where a person is allowed to stay and where such a person is not allowed to enter.

Court Help Limited can offer you legal help on this too. For relevant details visit

Q. How can Court Help Limited be of help?

A. At Court Help Limited, we will help you out with issues arising from your child arrangements order. We are very particular about breaking your issues and not your bank, as our services are as affordable as they can be. We will assist you in making the enforcement application and further steps requiring legal attention.

In addition to this, we can serve as your McKenzie friend in court.


Q. Who is a McKenzie Friend?

A. A McKenzie friend is a person who escorts you in court to aid you as a litigant in person (without a solicitor). Such a person sits by you in court, gives you legal advice at every junction and supports you.

They do not speak to/with anyone in court when the case is on, except you. McKenzie friend costs are always decided upon by both the litigant in person and the McKenzie friend. Contact us for more information or clarification on this. Or  visit


Usually, the parents or guardians of the child, as the case may be, are advised to resolve the issues that arise and ensure that the child arrangement orders are followed, both in spirit and in principle.

However, in cases where that is not achieved or simply can not be achieved due to the stubborn conduct of the other party one has no choice but to go back to the court to enforce the order.


The breach of a child arrangement order by a parent or a party to child arrangement order occurs, it is important to seek enforcement of the order immediately. This should be done immediately to avoid possible continuance or assumed faltered normalcy of the arrangements initiated by the defaulting party.

To move for the enforcement of the child arrangement order, you will need professional legal services. It requires rigorous procedural requirements that must be followed, and you may have a good case but not get what you want. This is because, beyond having a good case, the type of legal assistance you get also matters a whole lot.

We are renowned professionals with a track record of offering nothing less than the best of legal support services to our clients. Our reviews can be seen at  We offer a wide range of accessible services in family law. Call us or fill the form below.

Please do note that nothing on this website or this article should be treated as legal advice.

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