Toddler found in Crawley may be adopted judge rules

A toddler who was taken into care and whose parents cannot be found should be placed for adoption, a High Court judge has ruled.

Full story: BBC News

Ellie Butler murder: Father displayed 'pattern of impulsive violence'

A man who murdered his six-year-old daughter was described as displaying a "pattern of impulsive violence" months before she died, it has been revealed.

Full story: BBC News

Exemption clause ‘could damage adoption system’

Controversial plans to allow councils to be exempted from children’s social care legislation risk disrupting the adoption system, it has been claimed.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Judge commends ‘tremendous’ efforts to engage parents who attacked services on social media

Local authority praised for lengths it went to in attempting to assess and organise contact for parents who launched Facebook and YouTube campaign against 'kidnap' and 'forced adoption'.

Full story: Community Care

Unaccompanied migrant children let down by UK, concludes HoL report

Lords urge government to address the ‘complex problems’.

Full story: Family Law Week

Isle of Man allows straight couples to enter into civil partnerships

First place in British Isles to confer such a right.

Full story: Family Law Week

900 complaints about child protection made to Local Government Ombudsman in last year

68% of complaints upheld.

Full story: Family Law Week

Man who 'imprisoned' daughter loses legal bid to restrict media

High court judge says case involving British woman in Saudi Arabia raises serious issues that need to be heard in public.

Full story: The Guardian

Court of Protection extends pilot testing increased access for public and media

A pilot scheme which has allowed the public and media to gain greater access to Court of Protection hearings is to continue for a further 12 months.

Full story: Family Law Week

Strong support across sector for adoption panels in matching

CoramBAAF publishes results of sector survey.

Full story: Family Law Week

Supreme Court rules against Named Person scheme

Judges at the UK's highest court have ruled against the Scottish government's Named Person scheme.

Full story: BBC News

Judge praises social worker’s ‘unstinting commitment’ in radicalisation case

The case involved a 16-year-old girl who was placed in local authority care after attempting to fly to Syria to join ISIS.

Full story: Community Care

Final Report on Civil Court Structure published

Lord Justice Briggs has published his final report following a review of the civil courts.

Full story: Family Law Hub

Divorced helicopter pilot who refuses to leave the marital home could be jailed

A helicopter pilot who barricaded himself in the home he lost in his £6m divorce will be jailed if he does not get out of the property by next week.

Full story: The Telegraph

2012 statutory child maintenance scheme: Aug 2013 to May 2016 (experimental)

A statistical report providing figures on scheme intake, caseloads, accuracy, telephony and complaints (data covers August 2013 to May 2016).

Full story: Department for Work and Pensions

Mother wins funding for her costs debt to provide her with equality of arms

In BC v DE an unmarried mother successfully claimed under Sch 1 Children Act 1989 for the father to make interim provision to meet her historic as well as future costs in both these proceedings for financial provision for the child and proceedings concerning the arrangements for that child of the parties.

Full story: Family Law

Severely disabled baby should be allowed to die, judge rules

Three-and-a-half-month-old boy’s parents had objected to hospital’s request to withdraw life-sustaining treatment.

Full story: The Guardian

Sale under Insolvency Act 1986 s 335A should not be postponed because of respondents’ disabled child

In Grant & Another v Baker [2016] EWHC 1782 (Ch) the High Court has determined that the sale of a property, sought by the trustee in bankruptcy, should not be postponed until the respondents' disabled adult child no longer resided at the property.

Full story: Family Law Week

Government consults on mandatory reporting of child abuse

New statutory duties would not apply to general public.

Full story: Family Law Week

5,700 newly recorded FGM cases during 2015-16

Health and Social Care Information Centre publishes first ever annual statistics.

Full story: Family Law Week

Rich wives being told to get a job as judges clamp down on 'meal ticket' divorces - lawyers

Rich wives are increasing being told to go out and get a job rather than rely on maintenance from their ex-husband as judges lead what amounts to a clampdown on “meal ticket” divorces, according to lawyers.

Full story: The Telegraph

Court of Appeal disapproves of ‘destitution’ as threshold for support for migrant children and families

The Court of Appeal has disapproved of 'destitution' as the threshold for support for migrant children and families under the Children Act 1989.

Full story: Family Law Week

Court says care cases must be completed in 18 weeks, research finds

Research on the impact of the Public Law Outline introduced in 2014 has identified 'strong support' for improving timeliness in care proceedings.

Full story: Community Care

Arbitration Children Scheme launched

The Institute of Family Law Arbitrators has today (18 July 2016) launched the Family Law Arbitration Children Scheme, set to bolster the use of arbitration relating to family disputes.

Full story: Family Law

Roberts J quantifies wife’s ‘needs’ claim under Part III MFPA 1984

In Z v Z and Others Mrs Justice Roberts had to consider the quantification of a wife's claim under Part III MFPA 1984 application following a concluded agreement in Russia and where the assets which had been generated were nearly exclusively non-matrimonial.

Full story: Family Law Week

Judge rules against excessive tuition costs in divorce settlement

Two teenagers whose mother said she needed £60,000 a year to cover the cost of out-of-school tutors do not have enough time in their lives to enjoy being children, a High Court judge has suggested.

Full story: AOL

Law Commission opens consultation on its next programme of law reform

Commission proposes reviews of laws relating to surrogacy and to children’s social care.

Full story: Family Law Week

Resolution welcomes new Justice Secretary

Resolution today welcomed Rt Hon Liz Truss MP in her role as the new Secretary of State for Justice.

Full story: Resolution

Programme aims to help people affected by 'parental alienation'

Rise in cases of children poisoned against one parent by the other during family breakdowns calls for intensive help, support service says.

Full story: The Guardian

New statistics show laws need to catch up with modern families, says Resolution

Today’s statistics, showing cohabiting couples represent nearly 10% of the population, are further proof that the law on cohabitation needs to catch up with modern British society, says Resolution.

Full story: Resolution

Legal aid residence test was ultra vires, Supreme Court says in full judgment

Nearly three months after taking the unprecedented step of allowing an appeal to the government’s plans to introduce a civil legal aid residence test midway through its hearing, the Supreme Court today handed down its full judgment in the case.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Marriage continues decline and cohabitation increases since 2002

Latest ONS figures show that just over half the adult population are married.

Full story: Family Law Week

Action urged over social workers' loads

High drop-out rates among England's social workers must be tackled urgently as they grapple with the pressure of increasing workloads, MPs say.

Full story: BBC News

Millionaire airline captain locked in 'scandalous' divorce battle which could 'bankrupt' him

In a case that has been compared to the infamous court dispute between Jarndyce and Jarndyce in Charles Dickens’ Bleak House, a millionaire airline pilot is locked in a “scandalous” divorce battle over payouts for a daughter he says is not his.

Full story: The Telegraph

Cafcass private law demand

In June 2016, Cafcass received a total of 3,599 new private law cases.  This is a 6% increase on June 2015 levels.

Full story: Cafcass

Care applications in June 2016

In June 2016, Cafcass received a total of 1,265 care applications.  This figure represents a 13% increase compared to those received in June 2015.

Full story: Cafcass

Contact centre forced to close by legal aid cuts

A contact centre that provides a safe environment for separated parents to spend time with their children will close next month following a sharp fall in solicitor referrals as a result of legal aid cuts.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

FGM: 'More community funding needed' to maintain progress

Community groups involved in an initiative to tackle female genital mutilation in England and Wales have warned that future progress could be threatened by a lack of local funding.

Full story: BBC News

Children’s organisations welcome Narey report into residential children’s homes

Organisations supporting children have welcomed Sir Martin Narey's independent review of children's residential care.

Full story: Family Law Week

Ex-model wins £75m divorce settlement from Saudi billionaire

Christina Estrada awarded sum, including £53m cash payment, at high court from former husband Sheikh Walid Juffali.

Full story: The Guardian

Resolution members celebrated at Legal Aid Oscars

Members of family law organisation Resolution were celebrated in the 2016 Legal Aid Lawyer of the Year Awards.

Full story: Resolution

ADCS Conference: Timpson announces foster care review

The government is to undertake a national “stocktake” of fostering in order to understand how the system can be improved.

Full story: Children & Young People Now

Minister: ‘We won’t privatise child protection or politicise social work’

Edward Timpson tells children's services directors to dismiss "conspiracy theories" around government's social care reform agenda.

Full story: Community Care

Family justice review: how care applications vary in different LAs

Research looking at care applications in 21 local authorities (LAs) and how long they take.

Full story: Department for Education

Supreme Court to determine legality of legal aid residence test

Judgment to be delivered on 13th July.

Full story: Family Law Week

Strategy for helping care leavers published

State will support care leavers to achieve specified key outcomes.

Full story: Family Law Week

ALC publishes guidance on settlement conferences pilot

Association expresses concern about parties’ right to a fair hearing.

Full story: Family Law Week

Post-adoption support interventions: independent evidence review

Review of evidence relating to 15 post-adoption support therapeutic interventions for children and families.

Full story: Department for Education

Civil partner takes dissolution battle to Court of Appeal

Woman fighting for fair settlement after ex-partner hid £6m assets in business.

Full story: Family Law

Unregulated online divorce providers service 10-13% of the market

Legal Services Board research reveals extent of unregulated providers' market shares.

Full story: Family Law Week

Child maintenance: deduction orders against joint accounts

The Department for Work and Pensions has launched a consultation on plans to make deduction orders to recover child maintenance arrears from joint bank accounts held by a non-resident parent.

Full story: Family Law Week

Brexit: UK family law can improve, say lawyers

Leave vote provides opportunity for improved legislation but 'long and complex' process awaits.

Full story: Solicitors Journal

Average time for disposal of care or supervision applications made in last quarter stands at 28 weeks

The Ministry of Justice has published court statistics showing the average time for the disposal of a care or supervision application made in January to March 2016 was 28 weeks.

Full story: Family Law

CoramBAAF urges Parliamentarians to reject clause 15 of the Children and Social Work Bill

Provision could relax assessment process for children being fostered with family and friends.

Full story: Family Law Week

‘200,000 more children now living in poverty’

The Children’s Society calls for urgent action to protect the well-being of children.

Full story: Family Law Week

Further progress report on the London & South East Divorce Centre

Top 10 reasons for returning divorce petitions.

Full story: Family Law Week

Family Justice Council publishes Guidance on 'Financial Needs' on Divorce

The Family Justice Council has today (1 July 2016) released its Guidance on ‘Financial Needs’ on Divorce.

Full story: Family Law