Judiciary to receive a pay rise of 2 per cent

Review finds recruitment problems arising from deteriorating conditions of service.

Full story: Family Law Week

Ministry of Justice commits to care leaver covenant

The Secretary of State for Justice has pledged the Ministry of Justice to support the principles of the care leaver covenant, and to provide specified support to help care leavers in their transition from care to independence in order to improve their life chances.

Full story: Family Law Week

Civil Partnerships Bill reaches report stage

New clause requires government to bring equality between same-sex and other couples.

Full story: Family Law Week

Foster carers forced to bear transport costs when child moved schools

Ombudsman finds that Gateshead Council should have provided free school transport.

Full story: Family Law Week

Mental Capacity (Amendment) Bill ‘must be changed’, concludes Human Rights Committee

Definition of ‘deprivation of liberty’ needs to be clarified.

Full story: Family Law Week

Number of children in need rises by 4 per cent since last year

Number of child protection plans rises by 5 per cent.

Full story: Family Law Week

New courts and tribunals media guidance released for staff

HM Courts & Tribunals Service (HMCTS) has released guidance for its staff to help encourage and facilitate media access to the UK’s family and other courts and tribunals.

Full story: Family Law

Woman with learning difficulties not told she had contraceptive device covertly fitted

A young woman with learning difficulties should not be told she was covertly fitted with a contraceptive device as it would ruin her trust in her carers, a court has ruled.

Full story: The Telegraph

Many thousands of babies are living in households carrying very high risks: Children’s Commissioner

15,800 babies considered to be vulnerable or highly vulnerable are still living at home.

Full story: Family Law Week

Research launched to assess whether biased advice is distorting access to justice

A new research project will examine whether vulnerable people representing themselves in child court cases find themselves and their children put at risk by misinformed or biased online legal advice.

Full story: Family Law

“Vulnerable children will be victims” of Government’s failure to provide clarity - Lords warn Government over family justice system after Brexit

A “worrying level of complacency”, lack of clarity, and inadequate advice will have a devastating knock-on effect on the UK family law courts, and ultimately children – warns the House of Lords EU Justice Sub-Committee.

Full story: House of Lords

Government to amend deprivation of liberty scheme to cover 16- and 17-year-olds

Minister also signals further concessions on requirement to consult person subject to deprivation of liberty and on role of care home manager.

Full story: Community Care

Munby troubled by Court of Protection cases being 'transferred up'

Desperate parents are persuading less senior judges to transfer Court of Protection cases higher to force public authorities to act - a practice that the former president of the family division finds 'deeply troubling'.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Family judge goes public to BBC on litigant in person headache

A leading family judge has taken part in a documentary highlighting the difficulties faced by litigants in person as a result of legal aid cuts.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Senior Family Liaison Judge appointed

Mrs Justice Theis has been appointed as the Senior Family Liaison Judge with immediate effect for a 4 year period.

Full story: Courts and Tribunals Judiciary

Parents 'weaponising' domestic violence orders, claims charity

Families Needs Fathers alleges non-molestation orders are being used fraudulently to obtain legal aid.

Full story: The Guardian

Thousands fleeing domestic violence face squalid housing

Lack of social housing and poor council decisions failing vulnerable in England, say lawyers.

Full story: The Guardian

1,065 new care applications received by Cafcass in September

Applications 4 per cent down on a year ago.

Full story: Family Law Week

Private law cases received by Cafcass in September slightly down on a year ago

In September 2018, Cafcass received a total of 3,507 new private law cases.

Full story: Family Law Week

Cafcass publishes new assessment framework for private law cases

We have developed a new assessment framework to support our practitioners in assessing the harmful impact of a range of complex case factors on the children we work with in private law cases.

Full story: Cafcass

Judge condemns 'unacceptable' lack of secure accommodation for children

Judge Mary Lazarus had nowhere to send convicted 16-year-old involved in ‘county lines’ drug dealing.

Full story: The Guardian

Almost 17,000 newborn babies taken into care in England in past nine years

Many infants taken from their mothers in hospital within hours or days of delivery.

Full story: The Guardian

'McMafia' banker's wife with £16m Harrods spending habit named

Zamira Hajiyeva is wife of Azerbaijani banker jailed for defrauding his state-owned bank out of as much as £2.2bn.

Full story: The Guardian

Cafcass criticised for appointment of ‘inexperienced’ practitioner to complex case

Children's guardian slammed by judge for 'inadequate' report and 'woeful' court appearance.

Full story: Community Care

The International Recovery of Maintenance (Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance 2007) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018

This Statutory Instrument (SI) to be made under the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 will ensure that the UK is ready, after EU Exit, to apply the 2007 Hague Convention on the international recovery of maintenance.

Statutory Instrument

Parents breach court order after advice from McKenzie friend

Long-awaited action to regulate the McKenzie friend industry appears to be as distant as ever – as a new case of wrongful advice magnifies the perils of relying on unqualified help.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

All-Party Parliamentary Group sets out key requirements for Domestic Abuse Bill

New report calls for long-term, secure funding for specialist domestic abuse services.

Full story: Family Law Week

Inherent jurisdiction and deprivation of children’s liberty

President seeks to clarify the law.

Full story: Family Law Week

Family chief tells lawyers: 'The justice system won't collapse - you will'

The justice system may be 'under stress' but it will grind on - it is the people propping it up who will collapse, the president of the family division has warned.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Family court judge slams social workers for losing sight of child’s best interests

Court finds Northumberland council 'very badly mismanaged' care proceedings that dragged on for more than 18 months.

Full story: Community Care

Banker’s wife may lose UK property worth £22 million

High Court dismisses challenge to unexplained wealth order.

Full story: Family Law Week

Campaign launched to highlight harmful consequences of FGM

The Home Office has launched a campaign which highlights the harmful health consequences of FGM and signposts the NSPCC's 24 hour FGM helpline.

Full story: Family Law Week

Government agrees to amend regulations to allow for legal aid certificates to be backdated

Concession made in litigation brought by Duncan Lewis Solicitors.

Full story: Family Law Week

Outgoing charity head bemoans lack of political leadership on forced marriage

Jasvinder Sanghera welcomes new proposals but remains sceptical of government’s commitment.

Full story: Family Law Week

New measures announced to combat forced marriage

Consultation will consider a duty on professionals to report forced marriage cases.

Full story: Family Law Week

DWP and Barnardo's collaborate to support care leavers into work

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and Barnardo's are entering into a new partnership to support care leavers into work.

Full story: Family Law Week

Irish court sanctions return of child taken from council care

The High Court of Ireland has given Lincolnshire County Council an order for the return of a child taken out of the UK by its parents while in the council’s care.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Number of completed DoLS cases up by 20% in past year but backlog continues to grow

While DoLS teams and assessors completed substantially more cases in 2017-18, almost 140,000 applications were left unfinished at end of year.

Full story: Community Care

Civil partnerships: Law to be changed for mixed-gender couples

Heterosexual couples in England and Wales will be able to choose to have a civil partnership rather than get married, Theresa May has announced.

Full story: BBC News

Judge to decide whether baby can be first in UK history to be born without a mother in landmark trans rights case

Transgender parent says being forced to register as the child’s 'mother' breaches his human right to respect for privacy and family life.

Full story: The Independent