Guardian Ad Litem Analysis

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The aim of this essay is to outline the role, function and circumstances for the appointment of the Guardian Ad Litem for the protection of Children in Ireland. Under the Child Care Act 1991 which was the first act that supported the protection of children, a child is defined as “a person under the age of 18 years, apart from a person who is or has been married.

What is a Guardian Ad Litem? The definition as is stated in the CAAB suggests that the job of the Guardian Ad Litem is to signify areas that are potentially in conflict to represent the child who has difficulty with speech, language or has a disability. A Guardian Ad Litem (Guardian at law) can be an attorney for the child. They provide children with an independent voice in court
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They look for as much information as possible around the issues they are dealing with and information around the children. They conduct independent investigations into children's conditions and environments to determine their needs and what resources are available to meet these needs Their main focus is the child so they will meet with them continuously over the period in which the case is running so that he/she is fully aware of the feelings, interests and wishes of the child. Strictly speaking, however, there is no official definition and hence no nationally agreed standard for the role of a Guardian Ad Litem . The Guardian Ad Litem is responsible for gathering all the information needed for the case and to meet with other organizations which deal with the family. The Guardian Ad Litem shall ensure that the views of everyone significance are taken into account. They can often meet with teachers, family relatives, community workers and even therapists if they have one. Meeting all these people who are in the child’s life helps the Guardian Ad Litem to determine what is best for the child/children. This helps them to decide what the most appropriate parenting plan should be for example; joint custody or single parent…show more content…
The Guardian Ad Litem will ensure that both the child’s wishes and feelings are ascertained about their current and future circumstances. They are mostly involved when the court case is around child abuse/neglect, divorce and other family problems. Anyone involved in certain types of cases can make an application to the court for the appointment of a Guardian Ad Litem. Guardians ad Litem can provide a report to the court on the wishes of the child and make recommendations regarding their interests. They can be called on when a family are having disputes over the care plan that was appointed to the child previously. They support when or if a parent is unable or unwilling to fully participate in the proceedings, or where there is significant nationality, language or cultural
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