How to apply for Orders - step by step process

You can apply for the following orders by collecting a Children Act "Form C1" from your local Magistrates Court, County Court, or the High Court.

  1. Child Arrangements Order
  2. Specific Issue Order
  3. Prohibited Steps Order
  4. Parental Responsibility Order

You will need to provide details of the children and also details about yourself and your partner, and explain what Order you wish to apply for and why. You will have to pay a court fee.

You will need a Children Act "Form C4" in order to apply for an Order for the disclosure of a child's whereabouts. You will need to give details of the person whom you consider knows the whereabouts of the child.

If your children are in Care and you want an order to visit them because the Social Services will not agree then you need a Children Act "Form C15". You need to give your personal details and the children's details and explain how often you would like to see the children and why. You will have to pay a court fee.

If you want to apply to discharge a Care Order then the best Form to use is a Children Act "Form C2", again you will have to pay a court fee.

You can apply for Emergency Orders, for example Prohibited Steps Orders are usually made as an emergency. This is when you get an order without your opponent being present at court, these are also called "Ex-Parte" Orders.

However, the courts do not usually like to make Ex-Parte Orders without hearing from your opponent first. You can however get an Order that when your application is served on your opponent that they need only be given short notice and that an early date is fixed for the hearing.

Relatives such as Grandparents or other people who have cared for the children may be able to apply for any of the orders mentioned, Child Arrangements Order, Prohibited Steps Order, or a Specific Issue Order. However, they must first obtain the permission of the court.

Relatives or Grandparents cannot apply for Parental Responsibility. However, if a relative or grandparent gets a Child Arrangements Order, then they automatically get Parental Responsibility.

Service of Application to court for child order