H v H [2016] SAC(Civ) 12

http://www.scotcourts.gov.uk/docs/default-source/sheriff-appeal-court-(civil)/2016-sac-(civ)-012.pdf?status=Temp&sfvrsn=0.29287373868232724 (Sheriff Appeal Court, 11 November 2016)

Background: Action originally raised in 2010 by the appellant who sought residence orders in respect of the parties’ four children, interdict against removal of the children from the jurisdiction and delivery of the children. The respondent sought residence and specific issue orders allowing her to take the children to her country of birth on holiday. In 2011 the court made a remit to the Children’s Reporter, resulting in Children’s Hearings and appeals. Child welfare hearing in 2013. The Sheriff sought to conclude the matter by making final residence orders, deciding that A should reside with the appellant, and B, C and D should reside with the respondent. Contact arrangements could not be made on the basis of these residence orders. Case appealed to the Court of Session, and ended up before the Sheriff again. Ultimately, the Sheriff made a decision not to grant an interdict against the respondent from removing the children from the jurisdiction of the court. The appellant appealed this decision.

Held: The court refused the appeal, noting that:

“Even measured against the average speed of a glacier, the progress of this action from inception to conclusion was unimpressive.” [1] (See H v H [2015] CSIH 10 for earlier appeal to Inner House)

The court observed that:

“The appellant’s position on [the specific issue about taking the children on holiday] is a perfect illustration of his preoccupation with his own perceived rights as opposed to the welfare of his children.” [22]