The Human Fertilisation and Embryology (Parental Orders) Regulations 2018

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 is being amended to allow for one applicant to apply for a parental order. The purpose of this instrument is to set the legal framework for parental orders.

Statutory Instrument

The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 (Remedial) Order 2018

This order amends the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008 following a declaration by the High Court that s.54 of the Act was incompatible with Art.14 ECHR, in that it only allowed couples to apply for a parental order. The order will amend the Act to allow for a sole applicant for a parental order, and makes provisions consequential on this change.

Statutory Instrument

Divorce law consultation attracts at least 600 responses

A letter from the lord chancellor to MPs has highlighted the overwhelming call for divorce law to be reformed, with the Ministry of Justice's consultation attracting nearly 600 responses two weeks before it closed.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Child Maintenance Service: August 2013 to September 2018

Experimental statistics on cases processed under the 2012 statutory child maintenance scheme administered by the Child Maintenance Service.

Full story: Department for Work and Pensions

Evidence review of special guardianship to be held ahead of protocol changes

The Family Justice Council is to work with the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory and adoption and fostering academy CoramBAAF to address “pressing questions” about special guardianship.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

Grandparents may get more access rights under new govt plans

Grandparents estranged from grandchildren because of family breakdown will have new access rights under plans being considered by ministers.

Full story: Family Law

Firm fined £5,000 for misjudgment over divorce advice conflict

A regional firm which acted for a client in divorce proceedings despite being advised that a conflict could arise has been fined £5,000 and ordered to pay more than £26,000 in costs.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

LASPO review publication delayed again to early 2019

The long-awaited review of legal aid reforms will not be published by the end of this year, the Ministry of Justice has confirmed.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Judge rules doctors can amputate man's foot against his wishes

Doctors fear gangrene would spread from leg and ultimately kill him.

Full story: The Independent

Judge rules to allow severely ill 11-month old to 'die peacefully'

Parents said they understood doctors’ advice but could not make decision to let go.

Full story: The Guardian

Care applications received by Cafcass in November slightly down on last year

1,214 new care applications received.

Full story: Family Law Week

Cafcass private law demand in November up 9 per cent on last year

4,111 new private law cases received.

Full story: Family Law Week

Mr Justice MacDonald appointed Family Division Liaison Judge for the Northern Circuit

Appointment effective from 1 February 2019.

Full story: Family Law Week

Children looked after in England including adoption: 2017 to 2018

Information on looked-after children at both national and local authority levels for the financial year 2017 to 2018.

Full story: Department for Education

Family Court Statistics Quarterly: July to September 2018

Volume of cases dealt with by family courts over time, with statistics also broken down for the main types of case involved.

Full story: Ministry of Justice

Six months too long to finalise a divorce, bar warns

Making separating couples wait six months before their divorce is finalised is an 'unacceptable delay' for those who do not have children, the bar's representative body has told the government.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Local authority sorry after judge condemns IROs’ ‘utter failure’ to serve children’s best interests

Herefordshire council breached human rights in splitting twins and offered 'woeful' care to half siblings in separate case, judgments conclude.

Full story: Community Care

Restore legal aid for separating couples, MoJ urged

Digitising the divorce application process and hoping for the best isn't enough to reform the legal requirements for splitting up, the Law Society has warned, telling the government to restore legal aid so that separating couples can receive early advice.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Family Court judge raps council for "woeful" care of two young women

A Family Court judge has condemned a council’s care for two young women as “woeful” and said he was “appalled” by failures of social workers and managers.

Full story: Local Government Lawyer

1980 Hague Convention in force for Cuba

On 1 December 2018, the Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction ("Child Abduction Convention") entered into force for Cuba, following the deposit of its instrument of accession on 12 September 2018.

Full story: Family Law Hub

European Council agrees more effective rules to resolve cross-border parental responsibility issues

Work will continue on finalising the text of the revised regulations.

Full story: Family Law Week

President’s Practice Guidance: Family Court – Anonymisation guidance

The President of the Family Division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, has published practice guidance dealing with two aspects of anonymisation and the avoidance of identification of children in judgments placed in the public arena.

Full story: Family Law Week

925 newly recorded FGM cases in July to September 2018

Latest figures published by NHS Digital.

Full story: Family Law Week

Government commits to reform the Mental Health Act 1983

Final report of Independent Review of the MHA published.

Full story: Family Law Week

Violence against women and girls from Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities examined

Commons Select Committee explores factors behind violence and abuse in GRT communities.

Full story: Family Law Week

Over 4 million children now live in poverty, finds Joseph Rowntree Foundation

Children’s Commissioner calls for halt to Universal Credit.

Full story: Family Law Week

Working together to address pressing questions about Special Guardianship

The Nuffield Family Justice Observatory, CoramBAAF and the Family Justice Council to work together to address pressing questions about Special Guardianship.

Full story: Courts and Tribunals Judiciary

Report on Alternative Dispute Resolution published by Civil Justice Council

A working group of the Civil Justice Council has published a report making recommendations for Alternative Dispute Resolution.

Full story: Family Law Week

Child cruelty and neglect cases doubled in last five years

Child cruelty and neglect offences in the UK have doubled over the last five years, the NSPCC has revealed.

Full story: Family Law

Domestic abuse: Majority of controlling cases dropped

Figures for the first two-and-a-half years of a new law on coercive and controlling behaviour show the majority of cases were dropped without a charge.

Full story: BBC News

Child Support Agency case closures: June 2014 to September 2018

Quarterly experimental statistics on the progress of the Child Support Agency case closure programme from June 2014 to September 2018.

Full story: Department for Work and Pensions

The Child Support (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018

These Regulations amend child support regulations.

Statutory Instrument

Lift ban on payments for surrogates, says Sir James Munby

A ban on paying surrogate mothers should be lifted, the former head of the family court, has said.

Full story: The Telegraph

Religious vows, rituals, readings and music should be allowed in civil marriage, study shows

Couples marrying in civil ceremonies should be allowed to have religious vows, rituals, readings, and music as part of their ceremony for the first time, a major new study has concluded.

Full story: Family Law

CoramBAAF commissioned to undertake a rapid review on Special Guardianship

Nuffield Family Justice Observatory seeks to support Family Justice Council’s revision of protocols.

Full story: Family Law Week