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Re L (children)(threshold criteria)

8 September 2006

The appellant parents (P) appealed against a decision that the threshold criteria under the Children Act 1989 s.31(2) had been established. P, who had two children, aged seven and ten, suffered from severe learning difficulties and had been supported in their parenting by the respondent local authority. Following an allegation from a pupil at the children's school that the father had whipped the children, the local authority was granted an interim care order and the children were placed in temporary foster care. Thereafter, the local authority brought care proceedings. It initially sought to rely on the allegation that the children had been whipped in order to establish the threshold criteria, but it subsequently realised that it was unlikely to establish that allegation. The local authority relied on allegations that the father was aggressive, that he had failed to protect his daughter from a sexual assault from a known paedophile, and that the children were at risk of emotional ha...

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