David Burrows, Solicitor Advocate
A unified family court is now in prospect, intended to be in place by April 2013. Extensive provision for this is set out in Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984. This is in addition to the developments in children law proposed by Children and Families Bill. The family court provisions will confirm various administrative arrangements; but will also develop the substantive procedural law in certain crucial respects. It will also give reformers a chance to develop certain aspects of procedure - such as family proceedings still issued under Civil Procedure Rules 1998 and a proper disclosure law for family proceedings - so that more logic and coherence can be introduced into the new court.
The full version of this article appears in the October 2013 issue of Family Law.