Child and Family Agency -v- KM & Anor

JudgeO'Leary Constantine J.
Judgment Date13 March 2014
Neutral Citation[2014] IEDC 21
Case OutcomeApproved
CourtDistrict Court (Ireland)
[2014] IEDC 21
Judgment of Ms. Justice Constantine O’Leary delivered on 13th March 2014
1. I have agreed t o consider the question of c osts in relation to all applications involving these parties having regard to Judge T oale’s
position about ruling on costs on interim applications at the c onclusion of the entire proceedings, t he lack of experience by the
Respondent’s solicitor in appearing in this Court on proceedings such as these, a nd of the repeated applicat ions, their various
disposals, and my adjournments of issues spec ifically relating to c osts.
2. Having looked at the rec ord, I note t hat I ruled on the issue of cos ts for t he 13th of November on the 11t h of December 2013, also
I have also ruled on the issue of cost s for the 4th of Dec ember and the11th of December on the 11th of December. Where I said “No
other order as to cost s”. T he matter has already been ruled by me. I have no jurisdiction in relation to c osts f or those dat es. The
only matters on which I have not expressly ruled are cost s in respect of t he 10th, 15th, 18t h and the 23rd of Oc tober 2013, and the
8th of January 2014, any c osts arising from this application for c osts a nd the days which dealt exc lusively with organising the
psychiatrist’s report. I will explain below why the October dat es do not now arise and my reasons in relation to my ruling on cos ts for
the January and Fe bruary proceedings before me. The c osts of the dat es in relation to t he psychiatrist’s report are ca ptured by the
Order of the Judge who heard t he application under Sec tion 18 of t he Child Care Act 1991, as t hey were to advanc e the hea ring he
conduct ed.
3. There would be a strong argument that I c annot re- visit the c osts for the Oc tober dates, but as I did not express any order in
relation to them, I will re-enter t hem and refuse the application. I will make an order for no order as costs in respect o f the 10t h,
15th, 18th and the 23rd of Octo ber 2013, the 8th, 29th, and 31st of J anuary 2014, the 21st of February 2014 and today 13th of
March 2014.
4. I sat on the 21st of February 2014, expecting t o hear submissions about c osts for 08/01/2014, to be met by a st atement t hat the
Respondents were seeking cost s for all other days. Earlier receipt of t he solicitor’s submissions by me from the Family Law of fice might
have helped, but it would also have been helpful for c ase management if t he fac t that c osts additional to those of 08/01/2014 were
being sought had been spec ifically stat ed. It certainly esc aped Ms K’s notice when drafting her response to the submissions. The
solicitor felt it necess ary to write his supplementary lett er on the 20t h of February 2014 to c larify and confirm his position.
5. The dat es on which the matter was in Court and a summary of the business done on those dates is as follows:
• 10/10/2013 - Application for an Interim Care Order. Adjourned on the Respondents undertakings to 15/10/2013. No
application for co sts.
• 15/10/2013 - Application part-heard and adjourned to 18/10/2013 to c onclude.
• 18/10/2013 – An Interim Care Order made to 13/11/2013. Undertakings not ac cepted due to credibility issue. No
application for co sts.
• 23/10/2013 - Case re-ent ered without any notice to t he Court or written not ice t o Health Service Executive (HSE) (now
the Child and Family Agenc y (CFA)) on t he solicitor’s applicat ion, on matters on which I had reserved my position on t he
18th of Oc tober 2013 pending further submissions by him. Submissions reject ed. No application for c osts.
• 13/11/2013 - Application for a Care Order and an Application t o extend an Interim Care Order to 11/12/2013. Credibility
restored. Undertakings acc epted t o 04/12/2013 at Judge’s instigation after hours of evidence and argument at t he c lose
of Respondents’ cas e. Application by Respondents for cost s. Both the application by t he HSE/CFA, and the Respondent’s
application for co sts we re adjourned to 04/12/2013. The 10th, 11th and 12th of December 2013 was reserved for hearing.
• 20/11/2013 - Order for a report under section.27 of the Child Care Act 1991 by the psyc hiatrist, c ost to be paid by
• 4/12/2013 - Application for c osts f or the 13/11/2013. Application for a Care Order and an application for t he extension
of an Interim Care Order adjourned from the 13/11/2013. The psyc hiatrist’s report was not ava ilable for the 10/12/3013.
Application to reserve cost s, pending further submissions. All matters were adjourned to 11/12/3013.
• 11/12/2013 - Application for Costs for 13/11/2013, Applicat ion for Care Order, and Application to extend a n Interim Care
Order adjourned from 04/11/2013, and a new Applicat ion for the making of an Interim Care Order, started on t he
04/12/2013 and apparently agreed by t he Respondents to be for housekeeping purposes. Acc eptance of undertakings not
possible due to expect ed discharge of child from hospital during currency of order. Interim Care Order was made.
Application for cos ts of 11/12/2014 added to application for c osts f or 13/11/2013 as already adjourned into 11/12/2013.

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