Legal Aid Agency changes standard cost limits in family law cases

Substantive certificates for family work issued after 1 May 2016 will have a £5,000 cost limitation as standard, the Legal Aid Agency has announced.

Full story: Family Law Week

Vulnerable children turned away from mental health treatment report finds

The Education Committee's report on the mental health and well-being of looked-after children notes that a significant number of local authorities and health services are failing to identify mental health issues when children enter care.

Full story: Family Law

Lawyers hit back at Gary Lineker’s divorce claims

Family solicitors have defended the profession after Gary Lineker accused lawyers of fuelling hate between divorcing couples.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Police pensions: transfer values and pension sharing on divorce

Addenda to scheme guidance published.

Full story: Family Law Week

FGM toolkit for family lawyers launched

At its annual conference in Gateshead, family law organisation Resolution has published a new screening toolkit on Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).

Full story: Resolution

Woman who died after 'losing sparkle' cannot be named, court rules

Court of protection declines to name 50-year-old who died after refusing life-saving kidney treatment.

Full story: The Guardian

‘Only a fraction’ of forced marriage investigations result in a prosecution

FoI request uncovers evidential difficulties of investigations.

Full story: Family Law Week

New Resolution chair aims for no fault divorce

New Resolution national chair Nigel Shepherd used his first speech in the role to issue a rallying cry for family lawyers to continue to call for no fault divorce.

Full story: Family Law

Muslim man loses high court bid to have sons circumcised

Father went to court after mother of the boys, aged four and six, objected to the procedure at a young age.

Full story: The Guardian

Court takes stand against 'divorce tourism' in case of millionaire barrister and artist ex-wife

An Appeal Court judge has taken a stand on so-called "divorce tourism" in a dispute between a millionaire QC and his former wife who agreed a settlement in Australia.

Full story: The Telegraph

Senior childcare lawyer warns of pressures from “remorseless” rise in cases

A significant rise in public law children cases is putting more pressure on social workers and child care lawyers, all of whom are experiencing significant budgetary cutbacks, a senior local authority lawyer has warned.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

68% of local authorities show a year-on-year increase in the rate of care applications

Cafcass have today released statistics showing the number of care applications received per 10,000 child population – the rate of care applications – by each local authority in England during 2015-16.

Full story: Family Law

Powys mum banned from naming daughter Cyanide by court

A mother has been banned from naming her baby Cyanide after the poison which Adolf Hitler took before shooting himself.

Full story: BBC News

Foster carers warn cuts threaten children's welfare

The wellbeing of thousands of children in care is under threat because of budget cuts in England, a charity says.

Full story: BBC News

Supreme Court rejects attenuated welfare test: Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15

Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15 unanimously allowed the appeal from an order transferring the care proceedings pursuant to Art 15 of Brussels IIa.

Full story: Family Law

Local authority ‘lost sight’ of religious needs of children in care, judge says

A judge praised a social worker who he said grappled with the complexities of the case well.

Full story: Community Care

Care order applications at all-time high in 2015/16

Cafcass statistics show 12,741 care order applications involving 21,666 children were made in 2015/16.

Full story: Community Care

Cafcass private law demand

In March 2016, Cafcass received a total of 3,287 new private law cases.  This is a 4% increase on March 2015 levels.

Full story: Cafcass

Care applications in March 2016

In March 2016, Cafcass received a total of 1,221 care applications.  This figure represents a 14% increase compared to those received in March 2015.

Full story: Cafcass

Deprivation of liberty court cases triple but fall short of Cheshire West predictions

Ministry of Justice figures reveal 1,499 deprivation of liberty cases reached Court of Protection last year, up from 525 in 2014.

Full story: Community Care

112,000 private law applications but fewer than 5,000 MIAMs in 2014/15

National Family Mediation unearths figures through Freedom of Information request.

Full story: Family Law Hub

Personal insolvency news for family lawyers

The bankruptcy application process and fee were changed on 6th April 2016.

Full story: Family Law Week

Police response to domestic abuse needs much more work, charities say

Warning comes as IPCC report criticises police officers involved in case of Anne-Marie Birch, who was killed by her estranged husband.

Full story: The Guardian

Team appointed to establish scope and delivery of a new family justice observatory

The Nuffield Foundation has appointed a team from Lancaster University and the Alliance for Useful Evidence to undertake a scoping study that will establish the purpose, functions, and delivery options for a family justice observatory.

Full story: Family Law

Supreme Court to rule next week in foreign national child and adoption case

The Supreme Court will rule next week whether two children born in England to Hungarian parents should be adopted in England without the consent of the parents or whether the care proceedings should be transferred to Hungary.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Woman warned police nine times of husband's stalking before he killed her

Kent police call handling staff criticised for failing to identify potential crimes before Lee Birch strangled estranged wife Anne-Marie in 2014.

Full story: The Guardian

Domestic violence evidence requirements for legal aid

LAA responds to Court of Appeal judgment.

Full story: Family Law Week

The Children and Young Persons Act 2008 (Commencement No. 8 and Saving Provision) (Wales) Order 2016

This is the eighth Commencement Order made by the Welsh Ministers under the Children and Young Persons Act 2008 (“the Act”) which brings specified provisions of the Act into force in relation to Wales.

Family Justice Council: Help with sorting out finances on divorce

The Family Justice Council has launched a new financial guide to help people going through a divorce without a lawyer.

Full story: Family Law

Report reveals wide variation in charging for divorce services

Most firms offer fixed fees for simpler, uncontested cases.

Full story: Family Law Week

High Court guidance on relinquished babies and parents from abroad

The Family Division of the High Court has given comprehensive guidance in Re JL and AO (Babies Relinquished for Adoption) [2016] EWHC 440 (Fam) on how local authorities should deal with cases concerning relinquished children whose parents are foreign nationals.

Full story: Family Law

£200 million to transform life chances of vulnerable young people

Hundreds of millions of pounds are being invested in a new programme to revolutionise support for the most vulnerable children and families across the country, backed by brand-new freedoms for town halls to provide life-changing services for troubled young people, Education Secretary Nicky Morgan announced last weekend.

Full story: Family Law

Guidance issued on s. 20 Children Act amid fears councils could misinterpret law

Cafcass, the Association of Directors of Children’s Services and ADSS Cymru have published guidance aimed at clarifying the expectations on local authorities for children looked after under s.20 of the Children Act 1989.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Court of Appeal gives guidance in committal cases

Mrs Justice Theis sets out checklist of considerations.

Full story: Family Law Week