Rule 43 of the Uniform Rules of Court aims to avoid any considerable prejudice to either party pending divorce. Rule 43 is used for matters relating to interim care or contact with the parties’ child/children; maintenance for the spouse and/or children; and enforcing certain payments and interim contributions towards divorce or legal fees.

Mr Blogs is currently going through a divorce. Mr Blogs is a hand’s on and highly dedicated father. Mr Blogs wanted to exercise contact with his minor child, however Mrs Blogs restricted all access and contact of the minor child to Mr Blogs. In an effort to enforce Mr Blogs’ care and contact of the minor child he was left with no other alternative but to bring a Rule 43 application against Mrs Blogs. 

The Rule 43 application only dealt with care and contact of the minor child as Mr Blogs had been paying maintenance to Mrs Blogs which included paying the minor child’s medical and educational expenses. 

In this Rule 43 application for care and contact the Office of the Family Advocate was instructed by the High Court to conduct an enquiry to recommend Mr Blogs’ care and contact of the minor child. In this regard the Family Advocate made a suitable and constructive recommendation stating that Mr Blogs be entitled to exercise care and contact with the minor child. On the High Court considering the Family Advocates recommendation an Order was made by the Court pendente lite in terms of Mr Blogs very reasonable and favorable care and contact of the minor child. As there was an Order of Court, Mrs Blogs had to comply with the Order, which has allowed Mr Blogs to build a close and well established bond with his child. 

The Rule 43 application brought before the High Court in this matter to secure an Order for Mr Blogs’ care and contact with his child was an enormous success and a notable example of how this rule of Court can be an effective tool in acrimonious divorces.

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Author – Kate Bailey Hill

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