Brothers Live Thousands of Miles Apart

 

Brothers Live Thousands of Miles Apart…

Reporter: Kenn Griffiths.
                                                    

16 and 12 year old Darlington brothers will be living thousands of miles apart following an appeal of an order made in Middlesbrough County Court ruling that the younger boy could join his brother and father in America.

At the appeal hearing, instigated by the mother, Sir Mark Potter, a leading family judge, heard that the older sibling was determined to move to live with his father. Described as an “extremely thoughtful and articulate young man”, the brother told the court that he liked the sporting opportunities in the USA, did not enjoy the British weather and, upholding the expectation that ‘the child’s wishes and feelings should be taken into account’ firmly asserted “it’s my life anyway and I believe I should decide which path my life takes”.

At the original county court hearing his younger sibling had stated that he wanted to join his brother and father “I think I should have the same right to choose as everyone else, just because I am 12 doesn’t mean I can’t think for myself” he said.

At the appeal his mother put forward the position that she felt that since the departure of his older brother and his influence, her younger son had a “cheerful demeanour” was settled and performing well at school.

Following his older brother’s departure his wishes and feelings were reinvestigated and he made it known that he wanted the court to make the decision as he felt that he had “divided loyalties”.

Sir Mark eventually ruled that the county court judge “fell into clear error” by treating the brothers as a unit. He went on to record that the younger brother’s welfare had been “wrongly subordinated to the wishes and perceived interests” of his older brother.

Allowing the appeal he endorsed the position that the younger brother should remain in the UK with his mother in the knowledge that he could choose later, as an adult, if he wished to join his brother in the US.

 

 


 

 

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