Country's biggest regional divorce centre hit by record delays

Delays at the country’s biggest regional divorce centre reached unprecedented levels in 2018, figures obtained by the Gazette have revealed.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Girl must live with stranger instead of grandparents, judge rules

Croydon family court judge says blood relationship ‘powerful’ but not ‘definitive’.

Full story: The Independent

Family Drug and Alcohol Courts backed by private donors

A group of private backers has agreed to fund a national unit supporting courts which help parents deal with drug or alcohol addiction so their children are not taken into care.

Full story: BBC News

The Family Procedure Rules 2010 and Court of Protection Rules 2017 (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019

The amendments remove provision in the FPR and COPR which relates to powers, processes and orders under EU instruments or international agreements which will no longer be applicable or available when those instruments or agreements are revoked by the Withdrawal Act or the statutory instruments made under it, or in some cases amend such provision where such instruments are retained in an amended form.

Statutory Instrument

“Far removed from fat cats” – High Court praises lawyers

Lawyers acting pro bono in a complex family law case countered the stereotyped image of ‘fat cats’, a High Court judge has said in praising their “commitment to the delivery of justice”.

Full story: Legal Futures

CA: “Bully” judge forced mother to agree to care orders

A judge effectively bullied a mother into agreeing to interim care orders for her children against her wishes, the Court of Appeal has found.

Full story: Legal Futures

Human Rights Committee begins inquiry into children whose mothers are in prison

The Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights has begun an inquiry into children whose mothers are in prison.

Full story: Family Law Week

No-fault divorce to become the law

Long-awaited change will mean couples no longer have to allocate blame or mutually consent to ending marriage.

Full story: The Guardian

Resolution responds to Legal Aid review

Legal Aid review a welcome first step, but more must be done to reverse damage of cuts, say family lawyers.

Full story: Resolution

Government sets out new vision for legal support

A new strategy to help people resolve legal problems at the earliest opportunity and avoid the need for unnecessary court proceedings was unveiled today.

Full story: Ministry of Justice

Legal Support Action Plan

The Ministry of Justice has published a Legal Support Action Plan to deliver quicker and easier access to legal support services.

Full story: Ministry of Justice

Post-Implementation Review of Part 1 of LASPO

The Ministry of Justice has published an evidence based review of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO).

Full story: Ministry of Justice

New research: Government urged to reform overly-complex divorce system

New research published today by the Nuffield Foundation reinforces the case for reform of the overly complex divorce system in England and Wales.

Full story: Nuffield Foundation

No-deal Brexit: family lawyers told to seek local advice from EU neighbours

Continuing uncertainty over a no-deal Brexit next month has spurred a fresh wave of guidance for family lawyers who have been told they may need to start seeking advice from local lawyers in other EU member states.

Full story: Law Society Gazette

Family law disputes involving EU after Brexit

What to do if you are involved in a family law dispute (including divorce and child maintenance) with someone living in the EU after Brexit.

Full story: Ministry of Justice and Foreign & Commonwealth Office

Surge in parents forced to fight child custody battles with no legal representation

The number of parents forced to represent themselves in child custody battles at family courts has more than doubled in six years in the wake of legal aid cuts.

Full story: The Independent

Judge's Twitter plea to missing mum

A High Court judge has used Twitter to urge a mother who vanished with her three-year-old son to return home.

Full story: BBC News

Mother first to be convicted of FGM

First prosecution in England for failing to protect a person from FGM.

Full story: Family Law Week

‘Wellbeing of children in single parent families not negatively affected’: Gingerbread research

‘Single parenthood is more common than typically reported’.

Full story: Family Law Week

Resolution and The Law Society issue joint note on No-Deal Brexit and family law

Family lawyer organisation Resolution and The Law Society have issued a joint note for family lawyers in England and Wales, with recommendations in the event of no-deal in relation to Brexit on areas of family law including divorce, maintenance and children proceedings.

Full story: Family Law