Family courts unfair for litigants in person, MPs told

Litigants in person are not getting fair hearings, the Common’s Justice Committee heard this morning.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Resolution gives evidence to Justice Select Committee on the need to reform family legal aid

Resolution member David Emmerson today told the Justice Select Committee that the family legal aid cuts are leading to a failure of justice for many people, particularly those forced to represent themselves in the family courts.

Full story: Resolution

Legal aid cut for family courts 'damaging' for children

Children are being damaged by the rising number of estranged couples representing themselves in family court battles, a former judge has claimed.

Full story: BBC News

Woman fooled into believing she had given birth allowed to keep child

British couple allowed to keep girl, 2, after judge rules that they were innocent dupes and believed she was their daughter.

Full story: The Telegraph

Majority of family courts miss 26-week target

More than two-thirds of court areas in England have failed to meet a target for care proceedings to be completed within six months.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Guidance on court-authorised interventions during childbirth

Mr Justice Keehan has handed down judgment in An NHS Trust and Anor v FG (By Her Litigation Friend, the Official Solicitor).

Full story: Family Law

Legal Aid Agency announces family mediation tender

The Legal Aid Agency has published information for legal aid providers interested in applying to deliver family mediation from February 2015.

Full story: Family Law

Child Support Agency sees live caseload gradually decreasing

Percentage of parents contributing to current maintenance continues to rise.

Full story: Family Law Week

Couple petition minister over civil partnership conversion regulations

Dissatisfaction expressed at the bureaucratic nature of the ceremony.

Full story: Family Law Week

Rotherham – the report and responses

The independent review into child exploitation in Rotherham highlights a variety of historic and serious child protection failings within the authority and other agencies which led to young people not being protected in the past.

Full story: Family Law Week

Standard Fees tables published

Tables for care and supervision proceedings, and domestic violence, children and finance proceedings.

Full story: Family Law Week

Four family law applications for exceptional case funding have been granted between April and June 2014

The Ministry of Justice has released statistics concerning exceptional case funding in legal aid. The period covered is 1 April 2014 to 30 June 2014.

Full story: Family Law

The Children and Families Act 2014 (Transitional and Saving Provisions) (No. 2) Order 2014

This Order makes transitional provisions in connection with the coming into force on 1st September 2014 of provisions in Part 3 of the Children and Families Act 2014.

Statutory Instrument

Child protection IT system set for launch

An IT system that will help child protection and health professionals share information about children at risk of abuse and neglect will launch imminently, the Department of Health has confirmed.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Divorce getting more unfair because of poker effect – lawyer

Family lawyer warns cost of divorce forcing financially weaker parties – usually the wife – to ‘fold’ early and accept unfair settlements.

Full story: The Telegraph

Warring parents exploiting middle class school places fears in summer divorce battles

Parents targeting summer holidays to force through changes in divorce settlements by exploiting fears over school places, lawyers say.

Full story: The Telegraph

1,409 same-gender marriages between 29 March and 30 June 2014

ONS publishes first same-gender marriage statistics.

Full story: Family Law Week

Children in care total rises 12% in four years

Figures show more than 68,000 taken in by social services, with 42,000 having suffered abuse or neglect.

Full story: The Guardian

What’s happened since the Family Justice Review: a brighter future for family justice

This update from the government, along with a guide written for young people, sets out the progress made since the family justice review was published in 2011.

Full story: MoJ and DfE

More free mediation sessions for separating couples

Couples should avoid confrontational courtroom battles and use mediation as more free sessions will be funded by Government, Family Justice Minister Simon Hughes has announced.

Full story: Ministry of Justice

Domestic abuse crime considered by ministers

A new crime of domestic abuse could be created under plans being considered by ministers.

Full story: BBC News

Councils do not know extent of child neglect in their area

Sixty percent of English local authorities do not know how many children in their area are likely to suffer from neglect, according to new research.

Full story: Action for Children

Number of adoptions increases

The number of children placed for adoption has risen by 14 per cent over the last year, according to latest government figures.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

David Cameron says policies must pass 'family test'

All government policies will have to pass a "family test", David Cameron is expected to say in a speech later.

Full story: BBC News