I believe that Re A, B and C (Children) 2014 is the first judgment to be published and made available online despite not having any significance or importance in and of itself. It is not a precedent for anything, it does not raise any unusual or interesting areas of law, nobody is likely to ever cite it in a skeleton argument or a legal article. But it seems to me to be the first, so it has some degree of novelty and importance despite itself. [I could be wrong, it might just be the first one that has flitted over my radar, but I have been keeping an eye out]
It is a fairly short judgment, the case moved at the Issues Resolution Hearing (the hearing that the Court has once all of the evidence is in, to see if the case can be agreed or whether a full-blown final hearing is needed) from a dispute between the LA and parents on the one hand (who were saying the children should stay at home under Supervision Orders) and the Guardian who had reservations as to whether that was safe, to agreement that Supervision Orders were the right orders to make.
It might actually be more interesting for what is NOT said – whilst the name of the LA and the Guardian are up, there is no naming of the social worker (this may not be intentional, it might just be that in such a short judgment, the social worker’s name simply did not come up).
Cases like this, where the parents work to make changes, succeed in doing so, and there’s a good outcome for the family that means the children stay at home and have a happier life than they would have had before the proceedings started, don’t often get reported – the cases that historically get reported are the ones where there’s a big fight – such a big fight that the case is either in the High Court or gets appealed. Maybe it is a good thing to see that there are cases like this, where the hard work a family does to make changes makes a difference.
Happiness writes in white ink on a white page – Henry de Montherlant