This topic crops up again and again when we are checking what keywords people use when they end up on our website
Writing a statement for the family court is our most listed phrase! So we know a lot of you out there are writing these statements without much help :/
If you have a statement to write then definitely read our first blog post on the matter.
Unsure what to include in your witness statement? Fear not! At the bottom of the this post, you can download our free witness statement template to help get you going.
In the mean time, here are some more follow on hints for you:
- Avoid speadsheets unless you really, really, really think it is a good idea. There is a school of thought that says “nothing shows I am a top Dad like demonstrating I only see my child for 15.08% of his waking hours”. There is another school of thought that says “you are missing the bigger picture here”
- Tell the truth. Amazingly, this needs to be said. If you tell lies and you are busted your credibility will be shot to bits. Also, if you fess up to your lawyer then they cannot put your poppycock statement forward on your behalf and you face losing your lawyer.
- Whatever you want the judge to do needs to be explained in your statement. Make your mind up time. Spit it out. get off the fence.
- Why you want the judge to do it is also helpful. This should be connected to the evidence that you are able to give to the judge. What you see, heard, said and know.
- Sign and date your statement at the bottom. Put your address at the top and your full name. if you don’t want to put your address on it because there is a confidentiality reason, then ask the court about that first.
- If you are prepared to make changes to your behaviour, then say so. It will help if you can show that you have already taken steps to change i.e. considered and booked your perpetrators course. Stopped harassing your ex. Done a parenting course. Started taking your drinking seriously.
- It is tempting to think that “character witnesses” help, especially in child matters. In our experience, the judge wants to hear from the parents. They know that mates are biased in your favour by default. They rarely help and sometimes hinder.
- Remember you can be cross examined on your statement. Is it really what you want to say?
- Try and file it in the time limits you have been given. If you cannot do that then at least have the courtesy to let people know you need an extension. Don’t forget to ask the court as well.
- Don’t forget to keep a copy of your final signed version. “here’s the one I did but I changed it before I sent it to the judge” is not helpful if you want advice on it later.
Writing a Statement for the Family Court Workshop
We run a workshop in Reading and Oxford to help you draft your family court statement in a format that is easy to read, well crafted and full of punchy ways to make your point. With our help you can put together the best version of your case in writing.
To find out more about this workshop and for dates, click here.
We offer Pay As You Go advice on all aspect of family litigation
If you need a statement checking or a help with a hearing then contact us now to make an initial £60 appointment!
We also offer £60 appointments by Skype on Saturdays!