Litigation friends: manage a Court Funds Office account
The Court Funds Office holds money paid to a child to settle a court case until the child turns 18.
If you’re a litigation friend you’ll be responsible for the child’s Court Funds Office account until they turn 18, eg:
- keeping contact details up to date
- applying for any payments on the child’s behalf
- receiving statements and tax records
Your responsibilities end when the child turns 18. The Court Funds Office will usually transfer the money to the child and close the account after the child’s 18th birthday.
Apply to the court that awarded the money to the child if you’re not happy with how a litigation friend is acting and want to get someone else appointed as a child’s litigation friend.
Update contact details
Keep contact details up-to-date so the Court Funds Office can transfer the money to the child without delay when they turn 18.
Write to the Court Funds Office to tell them if:
- your address or the child’s changes
- your name or the child’s changes - you need to include a certified copy of a marriage certificate or deed poll
Court Funds Office
Get statements and tax records
You’ll get annual statements and tax vouchers for tax returns in April or May every year.
You’ll get another statement in October or November if there’s £10,000 or more in the child’s account.
Email the Court Funds Office if you need a statement at any other time.
Court Funds Office enquiries@CFO.gsi.gov.uk
Apply for payments
You can’t access the child’s account without an order from the court.
If there’s a reason the child needs money before turning 18, you must apply to the court that originally awarded the money.
Write to the court and explain what the money’s for and how it’ll benefit the child.
The court will tell you whether you need to:
- provide evidence that the child will benefit
- provide proof of exact costs
- attend a hearing - the child may also need to attend
- pay a fee
It will order the Court Funds Office to make a payment if your application is successful. You must give your bank account details to the court unless you ask to be paid by cheque.