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Domestic Proceedings and Magistrates' Courts Act 1978

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

10Powers of court to commit children to care of local authority

(1)Where a court has power by virtue of section 8(2) of this Act to make an order regarding the legal custody of a child and it appears to the court that there are exceptional circumstances which make it impracticable or undesirable for the child to be entrusted to either of the parties to the marriage or to any other individual, the court may, if it thinks fit, make an order committing the care of the child to such local authority as may be specified in the order.

(2)The authority specified in an order under this section shall be the local authority for the area in which the child was, in the opinion of the court, resident immediately before the order committing the child to the care of a local authority was made.

(3)Before making an order under this section the court shall—

(a)notify the local authority of their intention to make such an order, and

(b)hear any representations from the local authority, including any representations as to the making of an order under section 11(4) of this Act for the making of periodical payments,

but the court shall not be required to give any notification to the local authority under paragraph (a) above if an officer of the authority has already made to the court under section 12(3) of this Act a report which contains a recommendation that an order should be made under this section.

(4)On the making of an order under this section—

(a)Part II of the [1948 c. 43.] Children Act 1948 (which relates to the treatment of children in the care of a local authority) except section 17 thereof (which relates to arrangements for the emigration of such children); and

(b)for the purposes only of contributions by the child himself at a time when he has attained the age of sixteen and is engaged in remunerative full-time work, Part III of that Act (which relates to contributions towards the maintenance of children in the care of a local authority),

shall apply as if the child had been received by the local authority into their care under section 1 of that Act.

(5)While an order made under this section is in force with respect to a child, the child shall continue in the care of the local authority notwithstanding any claim by a parent or other person.

(6)An order made under this section shall cease to have effect as respects any child when he attains the age of eighteen.

(7)The court shall not have power to make an order under this section with respect to a child who has attained the age of seventeen.

(8)The court shall not have power to make an order under this section with respect to a child who is already for the purposes of Part II of the Children Act 1948 in the care of a local authority.

(9)Where the court makes an order under this section with respect to a child, the court shall not have power to make an order under section 8(2)(b) of this Act with respect to that child.

(10)Each parent or guardian of a child for the time being in the care of a local authority by virtue of an order made under this section shall give notice to the authority of any change of address of that parent or guardian, and any person who without reasonable excuse fails to comply with this subsection shall be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £50.

(11)The Secretary of State may by order repeal subsection (7) above, and any such order shall be made by statutory instrument and shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.

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