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Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council (17 018 533)

Category : Children's care services > Other

Decision : Closed after initial enquiries

Decision date : 22 Mar 2018

The Ombudsman's final decision:

Summary: The Ombudsman cannot investigate Ms J’s complaint about contact arrangements because she has taken the matter to court.

The complaint

  1. Ms J complains that the Council is wrongly requiring her contact with her children to be supervised and restricted.

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The Ombudsman’s role and powers

  1. We cannot investigate a complaint if someone has started court action about the matter. (Local Government Act 1974, section 26(6)(c), as amended)

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How I considered this complaint

  1. I have considered the information Ms J provided with her complaint. I have given her the opportunity to comment on my draft decision.

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What I found

  1. Ms J’s children live with a relative under a special guardianship order. The order specifies the arrangements for Ms J’s contact with the children. Ms J says the Council is wrong to apply conditions to her contact. She says she has been to court and proved this.
  2. We cannot investigate a complaint where if someone has been to court about the matter. So we cannot investigate Ms J’s complaint.
  3. Ms J also raised a number of other issues, but we have already considered these issues and made a decision on them. We will not consider them again.

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Final decision

  1. The Ombudsman cannot investigate this complaint. This is because Ms J has already taken the matter to court.

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Investigator's decision on behalf of the Ombudsman

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