chapter  15
25 Pages

The Child’s Welfare

Without the check list it is not easy to determ ine what is for the welfare of the child, which other wise depends on the discre tion of the indi vidual judge hearing each case. It is also inter est ing to analyse the manner in which differ ent judges use the check list, some as an aide memoire, some liter ally to make sure they have not omitted any point of consid er a tion, some homing in instantly on the heads which apply to the fact pattern before them. It is true that nowhere in the Act is a judge required to ‘tick off’ the para graphs (a) to (g) of the sub-section. Nevertheless the provi sions in s 1(4) making its consid er a tion mandat ory in contested cases means that the judge who is not to be appealed must be sure to take all relev ant factors into account in reach ing a decision, whatever his or her meth od o logy for consid er ing its content.