Child Abandonment Case

Danielle Cohen
By Danielle Cohen Immigration Law Solicitor Linkedin
Danielle Cohen has over 20 years of experience as a lawyer and a reputation for offering professional, honest and expert advice.
1 March 2011

Here at Danielle Cohen Immigration Solicitors in London we recently handled a very moving case involving a child abandoned in the UK by one of his biological parents. We are sharing it here as an example of a case involving the effective overlap between family and immigration law and another case in which we were able to achieve a successful and compassionate outcome for our client.

We were instructed on behalf of a child who was abandoned in the UK by his mother on the doorstep of his biological father from whom he had been estranged.  The father was happy to take responsibility for the boy but there were a number of obstacles to be overcome.

Firstly, it  was necessary to co-ordinate closely with family lawyers to ensure that the father could not be accused of child abduction and we therefore liaised with family solicitors to obtain a parental responsibility and residence order (from the Family Court).

Our second problem was the child’s immigration status:  time was of the essence in making an application to prevent him becoming an overstayer and to allow him to enrol in a UK school.  We made an application for indefinite leave for the child to remain in the UK, arguing that this was in his best interests.  We relied on the Children’s Convention which, although not formally incorporated into UK law, emphasises the obligation of the UK Border Agency to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.

We successfully obtained indefinite leave for the child to remain in the UK within 3 months of being instructed, an exceptionally fast decision time in terms of immigration law decisions, and the child is now making a new life with his father in the UK.