High Court rules against sharia-only divorce claim

The Family Division of the High Court has ruled against a man who claimed his marriage could only be dissolved under sharia, and that his wife must travel to Pakistan for a divorce.

Full story: National Secular Society

HRA claims and concurrent care proceedings

Third party costs orders, statutory charge guidance and an invitation to the Lord Chancellor.

Full story: Family Law Week

Resolution response to Prisons and Courts Bill

Resolution, the biggest national organisation of family lawyers, has issued a response to today's Prisons and Courts Bill. The Bill was unveiled today by Justice Secretary Elizabeth Truss.

Full story: Family Law

MOJ publishes research on the cross-examination of vulnerable and intimidated witnesses in private family law

The Ministry of Justice has today (23 February 2017) published a report on the cross-examination of vulnerable and intimidated witnesses in private family law.

Full story: Family Law

The Court of Protection (Amendment) Rules 2017

These Rules amend the Court of Protection Rules 2007 in two respects.

Council criticised over death of child on special guardianship order

A children's services department has been criticised for a raft of failures in their handling of the case of an 18-month-old girl, who was murdered after being placed with a family member through a special guardianship order.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Consultation launched on draft Practice Direction 3AA

Vulnerable persons: participation in proceedings and giving evidence.

Full story: Family Law Week

Courts to ban cross-examination of victims by abusers

Domestic abusers will no longer be able to cross-examine their former partners in family courts in England and Wales, the justice secretary is to announce.

Full story: BBC News

Legal aid shakeup hands lifeline to domestic violence victims

Removal of five-year limit for applications follows vow by prime minister to increase domestic abuse prosecutions.

Full story: The Guardian

Relate puts pioneering online divorce project on hold

A project to create the first online dispute resolution system for divorcing and separating couples in the UK has been put on hold, Legal Futures has been told.

Full story: Legal Futures

Bill requiring government to ratify Istanbul Convention to have report stage on 24 February

Government expected to table amendments.

Full story: Family Law Week

Supreme Court finds that minimum income rules for foreign spouses are lawful in principle

Children’s Commissioner responds to judgment.

Full story: Family Law Week

Social workers advised to visit homes for six months in suspected abuse cases

Social workers should consider home visits for at least six months if there are suspicions that a child is being abused or neglected, new guidance has suggested.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Businessman 'repeatedly lied' during evidence in cash battle with estranged wife

A High Court judge has concluded a businessman dubbed ''Africa's youngest billionaire'' by journalists lied during the latest stage of a cash battle with his estranged wife.

Full story: Aol.

Judge describes man in divorce case as ‘unattractive witness’ who tried to ‘bully the court’

A businessman embroiled in a High Court cash fight with his estranged wife tried to ‘fall back on his dyslexia and Asperger’s’ when the going got tough during a trial, a judge has said.

Full report: Metro

Heterosexual couple lose civil partnership challenge

A heterosexual couple have lost their Court of Appeal battle for the right to enter into a civil partnership instead of a marriage.

Full story: BBC News

Family judge condemns 2,000-page bundle

A family judge has expressed his disapproval at the ‘unwarranted expenditure’ in a case where a local authority breached Article 8 rights under the European Convention on Human Rights by taking an infant into care.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

76 projects to share £20 million fund to support domestic violence victims

Seventy-six projects across the country will receive a share of £20 million to support victims of domestic abuse.

Full story: Family Law Week

Prime Minister's plans to transform the way we tackle domestic violence and abuse

Prime Minister Theresa May announced plans for a major programme of work leading towards bringing forward a Domestic Violence and Abuse Act.

Full story: Ministry of Justice

Government announces new funding to tackle child sexual abuse and child trafficking

Centre of Expertise to be launched.

Full story: Family Law Week

New research identifies impact of shortened care proceedings

Fewer care orders and placement orders made; more special guardianship and supervision orders.

Full story: Family Law Week

Domestic abuse victims wait nearly two years for compensation

Criminal injuries payouts delayed by almost double the time advised by charter, Ministry of Justice data show.

Full story: The Guardian

Court of Protection holds first public hearing under transparency pilot

The Court of Protection has started its first public hearing under its transparency pilot.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Parliamentary Group on Children of Alcoholics launches manifesto

Group calls for national strategy to counter ‘Britain's biggest secret scandal’.

Full story: Family Law Week

Kirkless council breached parents’ human rights by removing baby

Council ordered to pay £11,250 after removing week-old baby over father’s ‘unorthodox views’ about benefits of formula milk.

Full story: The Guardian

Guidance issued on DoLS and intensive care after landmark ruling

The judgment held that “in general” there could be no deprivation of liberty under human rights law when a person is receiving lifesaving treatment.

Full story: Community Care

Work done by social workers ‘marginalised’ in court, council says

A council also reported that a rise in legal challenges to placement orders was contributing to adoption delays.

Full story: Community Care

‘Helen Archer’ law must not forget alleged abusers

Barrister condemns routine use of terminology that fails to acknowledge presumption of innocence.

Full story: Solicitors Journal

Government rebuffs latest calls for no-fault divorce

Widespread calls to reform divorce laws appear to be falling on deaf ears after the government confirmed it has no current plans to change existing legislation.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

University professor’s challenge to the validity of his 16 year marriage fails

Court of Appeal applies ‘presumption of marriage’ to Syrian couple’s relationship.

Full story: Family Law Week

Doctors can end life-support for baby 'with only weeks to live', judge rules

High court judge says stopping ‘invasive’ treatment is in baby’s best interests despite her parents’ objections.

Full story: The Guardian

ADCS and Cafcass agree on ways social workers can collaborate during proceedings

The Association of Directors of Children’s Services and Cafcass have struck an agreement on how social workers in both local authorities and those acting as guardians in family proceedings can better work together during care proceedings and pre-proceedings in the family courts.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Woman seeks to end 39-year marriage in Valentine's Day court appeal

Tini Owens is appealing against judge’s ‘extraordinarily unusual’ refusal to grant her a divorce last year.

Full story: The Guardian