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The Magistrate’s Permit – New regulations on Movement of children during the Lockdown

Magistrate Permit Movement of Children Lockdown Advocate Cape Town

30 May 2020 – Latest Regulations on the movement of minor children during the lockdown – The introduction of the Magistrate’s Permit

The Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, published new regulations regarding the Lockdown on 29 April 2020. As from 1 May 2020, South Africa’s lockdown would be on Level 4, one level down from when it started.

The new regulations bring challenging changes regarding the movement of children between parents. For example, the provision of applying for a Magistrate’s permit. Therefore, some of the new regulations are welcomed by us, and others not. The regulations are further below.

Click here to read an article regarding the previous regulations on the movement of children.

Summary of the recent regulations that will come in effect tomorrow 1 May 2020:

Local movement of children during the lockdown

Movement of Children may only take place in the same metropolitan area or district municipality if the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver is:

(a) in possession of a Court Order; or

(b) a parental responsibilities and rights agreement or parenting plan, registered with the family advocate; or

(c) a permit issued by a magistrate which corresponds with Form 3 of Annexure A if the latter documentation is not available; and

(d) The household to which the child has to move must be free of COVID-19.

Before a magistrate may issue a permit, he or she must be provided with a birth certificate or certified copy of a birth certificate of the child or children to prove a legitimate relationship between the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights. Furthermore, written reasons as to why the movement of the child is necessary must be provided.

In our view, the permit application is a step back. This we say as previously there was no need for the application for a permit. The courts would be inundated with such applications. Producing a birth certificate as previously required should have continued.

Inter-Provincial movement of children during the National lockdown

The regulations now allow for a once-off movement of children between provinces during the lockdown. It states:

“Any child who was not at the residence of their primary caregiver before the lockdown period and who could not travel between provinces, metropolitan and district areas during the lockdown will be permitted, on a once-off basis, to return to the residence of their primary caregiver if the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver is in possession of a permit issued by a magistrate which corresponds with Form 3 of annexure A.”

Before a magistrate issues a permit, he or she must be provided with:

(a) a court order; or

(b) a parental responsibilities and rights agreement or parenting plan registered with the family advocate; or

(c) a birth certificate or certified copy of a birth certificate of the child or children to prove a legitimate relationship between the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights, and

(d) written reasons why the movement of the child is necessary.

Furthermore, the household to which the child has to move must be free of COVID-19.

Click here to read an article regarding the previous regulations on the movement of children.

Below are the relevant regulations and the relevant form the Magistrate must provide.

Movement of children

  1. (1) The movement of children between co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver, as defined in section 1(1) of the Children’s Act, 2005 (Act No. 38 of 2005), in the same metropolitan area or district municipality is allowed subject to the following if the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver is in possession of—

(a) a court order; or

(b) a parental responsibilities and rights agreement or parenting plan, registered with the family advocate

(c) a permit issued by a magistrate where which corresponds with Form 3 of Annexure A if the documentation in paragraphs (a) and (b) is not available.

(2) The movement of children between co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver, as defined in section 1(1) of the Children’s Act, 2005 (Act No. 38 of 2005), between different metropolitan areas, district municipalities or provinces is allowed if the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver is in possession of a permit, issued by a magistrate which corresponds with Form 3 of Annexure A.

(3) Any child who was not at the residence of their primary caregiver before the lockdown period and who could not travel between provinces, metropolitan and district areas during the lockdown will be permitted, on a once-off basis, to return to the residence of their primary caregiver if the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights or a caregiver is in possession of a permit issued by a magistrate which corresponds with Form 3 of annexure A.

(4) The household to which the child has to move, must be free of COVID-19.

(5) (a) Before a magistrate issues a permit referred to in regulation 17(1)(c), he or she must be provided with—

(i) birth certificate or certified copy of a birth certificate of the child or children to prove a legitimate relationship between the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights; and (ii) written reasons why the movement of the child is necessary.

 

(b) Before a magistrate issues a permit referred to in 17(2) or (3), he or she must be provided with—

(i) A court order

(ii) a parental responsibilities and rights agreement or parenting plan registered with the family advocate or

(iii) a birth certificate or certified copy of a birth certificate of the child or children to prove a legitimate relationship between the co-holders of parental responsibilities and rights; and

(iv) written reasons why the movement of the child is necessary.

Permit issued by a Magistrate for the movement of children during the lockdown
Permit issued by a Magistrate for the movement of children during the lockdown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Click here to read an article regarding the previous regulations on the movement of children.

 

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