Family Law Newsletter: 14 March 2016

Family Law , 14 MAR 2016
The Family Law newsletter provides you with all the latest news, judgments, articles and guidance to ensure you are up to date with the latest developments and their impact on practice.

News


Family Law Panel awarded specialist support and investment
11 March 2016
The Family Law Panel, a nationwide consortium of experts dedicated to supporting families in navigating the legal process, has been awarded a specialist social venture investment to help it grow and release its full potential.

Care applications received by Cafcass hit all-time high in February 2016
11 March 2016
Figures released by Cafcass show that the number of care applications received in February 2016 increased by 27% from those received in February 2015. A total of 1,225 care applications were received.

10 per cent increase in private law cases received by Cafcass in February
11 March 2016
Figures released by Cafcass show that, in February 2016, the number of private law cases received increased by 10% from February 2015 levels. A total of 3,237 new cases were received.

EU proposes accession to Istanbul Convention on domestic violence: a brief background to international domestic violence laws including the Istanbul Convention
David Hodson @DMHodson
07 March 2016
On 4 March 2016, there was much EU fanfare and self-congratulation that the EU was proposing that it should accede to the Istanbul Convention on domestic violence. Beyond the press releases, what does this mean? Where does it fit in to what is already existing international law? What might it mean in practice?

Articles


NR v AB [2016] EWHC 277 (Fam): A licence made sense
Gwyn Evans @GwynforLaw
14 March 2016
If a matrimonial home is owned by a limited company, shares in which are held - and financing for which was provided by a spouse together with his wider family, can the ownership of such a matrimonial home (and of other property similarly held) be construed as a nuptial settlement capable of variation under s 24(1)(c), Matrimonial Causes Act 1973?

Sleepless nights reporting the family courts
Louise Tickle @louisetickle
14 March 2016
Annie Bertram had her newborn baby taken into care shortly after care orders had been granted on two of her other children. I heard Annie speak last year about her fight to get her baby back at the Transparency Project conference in June last year, and immediately I knew I wanted to write about what she and her family had been through. But care proceedings are held in private: publishing details is usually a contempt. This article explains how, with pro-bono support from barristers Lucy Reed and Sarah Phillimore, I went to court to argue for the right to tell Annie's story.

Lay advisers are the lawyers of the future let's support them
Natasha Phillips @SobukiRa
14 March 2016
Lay advisers have historically been met with suspicion and sometimes hostility inside the Family Court, but the judiciary's latest Consultation on McKenzie Friends examining their status and place inside the system is the perfect opportunity to embrace this new form of assistance, and to acknowledge the part it is playing in shaping the future of family law.

Publicity and Poppi Worthington
David Burrows @dbfamilylaw
10 March 2016
Re W (Children) [2016] EWCA Civ 113 is an appeal against aspects of a reporting restrictions order made by Peter Jackson J in relation to a renewed fact-finding hearing in relation to his earlier findings as to the death and injuries prior to death of Poppi Worthington. That re-hearing is published as F v Cumbria County Council and M (Fact-Finding No. 2) [2016] EWHC 14 (Fam).

Reveal yourself: a human behind the suit
Laura Naser @Laura_Naser
10 March 2016
Nowadays most people are familiar with using social media in their personal lives, and we are all warned about making sure our privacy settings protect our private lives from unwanted eyes.

What next for 'stepped' periodical payments orders?
Olivia Murphy
09 March 2016
The Court of Appeal recently decided a discreet argument regarding periodical payments orders in the case of Aburn v Aburn [2016] EWCA Civ 72 (FLR forthcoming). So, what are the implications for automatic variations in periodical payments?

Pension sharing on divorce and annuities: experts' review
09 March 2016
When new pension freedom rules were introduced in April 2015 there was much speculation in the financial press and media that pensions could simply be treated as bank accounts. Whilst this has proved to be an oversimplification in terms of the products available and the tax consequences of large withdrawals, there are some circumstances where the capital value may be more relevant than the potential pension income.

Disallowed costs and case management
David Burrows
09 March 2016
The case of Re L (Case Management: Wasted Costs) [2016] EWFC B8  where HHJ Bellamy in the Family Court awarded 'wasted costs' against solicitors in care proceedings - is difficult to reconcile with the mainstream of wasted costs orders in the civil courts.

Considering the case for parity in policy and practice between adoption and special guardianship: findings from a population wide study
Professor Judith Harwin, Dr Melanie Palmer, Dr Stephen Swift, Dr Bachar Alrouh and Professor Karen Broadhurst
08 March 2016
Recent government announcements to amend special guardianship and adoption legislation and increase levels of support provide the context to this article. It reports findings from a two phrase national study of supervision orders and special guardianship funded by the Nuffield Foundation.

Bury St Edmunds Divorce Centre 8 months on - the fastest administrative Family Court?
Stuart Clark
07 March 2016
It has been just over 8 months since the majority of the administration of divorce suits was passed from the Central Family Court and other courts in London and the South East to the Bury St Edmunds Divorce Centre as part of the centralisation of divorce administration in England and Wales to 11 regional Divorce Centres.

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Judgments


COURT OF PROTECTION: Re VE (Deprivation of Liberty) [2016] EWCOP 16
Hearing Date: 10 March 2016
Mr Justice Charles
Court of Protection
Charles J appointed a representative pursuant to Rule 3A of the Court of Protection Rules and approved the local authority standard explanation letter of the role of a representative.

COURT OF PROTECTION: Re J and Others (Deprivation of Liberty) [2016] EWCOP 15
Hearing Date: 10 March 2016
Mr Justice Charles
Court of Protection
Charles J gave procedural guidance on cases involving the deprivation of liberty of persons without a family member or friend who could act as a representative for the purposes of Rule 3A of the Court of Protection Rules 2007.

ABDUCTION: Re D (Children) (Child Abduction: Practice) [2016] EWHC 504 (Fam)

Hearing Date: 10 March 2016
Sir James Munby, President of the Family Division
Family Division
The President granted the father permission to withdraw Hague Convention proceedings.

PUBLIC LAW CHILDREN: Re AD and AM (Fact-Finding Hearing) (Application for Re-Hearing) [2016] EWHC 326 (Fam)
Hearing Date: 24 February 2016
Mr Justice Cobb
Family Division
The mother's application to re-open a fact-finding hearing on the basis of new medical evidence was allowed.

ABDUCTION: KL v Poland (Application No. 30813/14)
Hearing Date: 01 March 2016
European Court of Human Rights
The European Court of Human Rights unanimously held that there had been a violation of Art 8 of the European Convention.

COSTS: Re L (Case Management: Wasted Costs) [2016] EWFC B8
Hearing Date: 04 March 2016
His Honour Judge Clifford Bellamy
The Family Court
Wasted costs orders were made during care proceedings.


Legislation & Guidance


The Pension Sharing (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2016 (SI 2016/289)
07 March 2016
The Pension Sharing (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2016 were published on 7 March 2016.

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