MoJ keep on changing their web site - this results in some of the links below being broken.
Do read: CB7, Guide for separated parents: children and the family courts this give an outline of the court process and forms that you will need to submit.
The forms in detail
It can be confusing to work out which form you need to use, roughly: start a new case with a C100 (or C1 if for something that a C100 is not for); in an existing case use C79 for enforcement and for everything else use a C2. Do read CB1, Making an Application - Children and the Family Courts Section 'F – The forms and leaflets you need' tells you which forms you need to submit depending on what you want to do.
The forms are now available on-line, beware these are occasionally updated so check before you use an old copy:
- C1 Application for an order. (Children Act), see also Notes for Guidance
- C1A Allegations of harm and domestic violence. (Supplemental information form)
- C2 Application - for leave to commence proceedings for an order or directions in existing family proceedings or to be joined as or ceased to be a party in existing family proceedings.
- All other Children Act forms and court leaflets 
- FAMILY PROCEEDINGS: COURT BUNDLES (UNIVERSAL PRACTICE TO BE APPLIED IN ALL COURTS OTHER THAN THE FAMILY PROCEEDINGS COURT) President’s Direction 27th July 2006 
- C9 Statement of Service
- C10 Supplement for an application for financial provision for a child or for variation of financial provision for a child, see also Notes CB1 and Notes CB2
- CB3 Serving the forms
- C10a Statement of Means and CB1 and CB2 above.
- C100 Application under the Children Act 1989 for a residence, contact, prohibited steps, specific issue or other section 8 order
- C78 Used to apply a warning notice on an order that was written prior to December the 8th 2008. All orders after December the 8th 2008 should have the warning words written in by the court as default. The Warning Notice replaces the penal Notice.
- C79 Application related to enforcement of a contact order also read CB5 guidance on completing a C79
- Request for Service by Court Bailiff
- Guidance on forms and what to do with them
Petition for Divorce
- I want to get a divorce - What do I do?
- D8 - Divorce petition (also: guidance, use this also for dissolution of a civil partnership).
You will probably need to pay a fee when you submit an application to court, see the overview Court and Tribunal fees, fees are listed Civil and Family Court Fees (From 22 April 2014). If you have problems paying you can apply for remission there is a special form for emergency applications.
Note: that if you are starting proceedings and submit a C1 and a C100 then only one fee is payable, not a fee for each -- you may need to argue this as many court officials have not been properly trained about this.
You may search for other forms here.
Forms related to finance are dealed with separately: Finance re Spouse
A useful set of template documents.
Examples of filled in forms
More like this needed.
Note that this direction from the President of the family division should be followed when preparing family court bundles.
Serving the forms
You need to serve the forms on the other person, this means giving it to them - ie making them aware.
You should do this at least 14 days before the hearing, ie they must receive them 14 days before. In an emergency you may get this time reduced by order of a judge Emergency Hearing
You can serve:
- In person: knock on the door and hand over. Although if there may be a doorstep row it is probably best to get someone else to do it for you. Do NOT get involved in a discussion, just say something like 'these are important, you should read them'.
- By hand to their solicitor. Give it to the receptionist and ask for a receipt.
- By first class post. This is deemed received 2 working days after posting. Ask the post office for a certificate of posting, it does not cost you anything and no mark is put on the letter. A registered letter needs to be signed for (which can cause delay).
- By fax to their solicitor. Some solicitors say that they will not accept service by fax, I don't know if they can refuse it. In the case of an emergency order, especially where some distance is involved, you can ask the judge to order that service by fax be permitted.
- Electronically. Email, twitter and facebook have been used - treat these with caution. You may need to ask for special permission to be able to do so (probably because you do not have a postal address or know their solicitors (if any)); you will need to be sure that the electronic account is indeed that of the correct person.
Once you have served the forms, complete a C9 -- see Court Forms