Care applications jumped by more than ten per cent in December while private law applications declined, according to new figures from the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, more commonly known as Cafcass.
The Service received a total of 918 care applications from local authorities around the country that month, a 13 per cent increase on December 2013. By contrast, a drop was detected in the total received in the year to March last year: 10,617 is five per cent down on the total the previous year, when 11,110 applications were received.
Some months during the year set new records: The number of applications received in both April and October 2013 were the highest on for those particular months. Meanwhile, the 1,019 applications received in July 2014 was the most ever recorded for a single month.
Meanwhile, Cafcass received 2,735 private law cases for processing in December, a four per cent fall on the same month the previous year. However, in a reverse of the situation with care cases, the annual total (46,607 in the year to March 2014) actually represented an increase on the previous year, albeit of only two per cent.
Private law cases concern disputes between individuals, not involving the government or other public bodies.
Cafcass works to promote the interests of children caught up in family law hearings.