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Family Law newsletter: 18 April 2016

Date:15 APR 2016
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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.


68% of local authorities show a year-on-year increase in the rate of care applications
15 April 2016
Cafcass have today (15 April 2016) released statistics showing the number of care applications received per 10,000 child population - the rate of care applications - by each local authority in England during 2015-16.

Well-being of children in care threatened by cuts, warns charity
13 April 2016
The well-being of children living in foster care is under threat from government funding cuts to local authority budgets in England, The Fostering Network is warning following a survey of foster carers.

Supreme Court rejects attenuated welfare test: Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15
Roger McCarthy QC
13 April 2016
Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15 unanimously allowed the appeal from an order transferring the care proceedings pursuant to Art 15 of Brussels IIa.

Four per cent rise in private law cases received by Cafcass in March 2016
12 April 2016
Figures released by Cafcass show that, in March 2016, the number of private law cases received increased by 4% from March 2015 levels. A total of 3,287 new cases were received.

New care applications at an all-time high for the month of March
12 April 2016
Latest figures released by Cafcass reveal that new care applications received in March 2016 are at an all-time high for the month of March.

International spousal maintenance barometer reveals that English family courts are still among the most generous
12 April 2016
Although there is a greater judicial appetite for ex-spouses to provide for themselves financially, maintenance awards made by the family courts in England and Wales are still close to the dependency end of the first ever international spousal maintenance barometer.


Making contact happen in chronic litigation cases: a mentalising approach
Eia Asen & Emma Morris
18 April 2016
This paper describes an innovative approach to assist the outcome of entrenched private law contact and residence disputes where dependent children are caught up in their parents' 'chronic' acrimonious relationship. In these high conflict cases, children frequently side with their resident parent and refuse to have direct or indirect contact with the other parent.

Adoption targets: the good, the bad and the ugly
Claire Fenton-Glynn - @CFentonGlynn
15 April 2016
On 14 January 2016, the Department of Education announced a 'fundamental change to the law' that would ensure that 'courts and councils always pursue adoption when it is in a child's interests'. While the form or content of this legal change remains unclear, the motivation behind it is not.

Training for the IFLA Children Scheme: a delegate's view
James Pirrie & Felicity Shedden - @jamespirrie, @FShedden
15 April 2016
It's the first day of training for children scheme arbitrators. Back with our trainer, Suzanne Kingston, from our financial arbitration training, this time partnered by Janet Bazeley QC, there was a palpable sense of excitement in the air as we gathered. All the delegates were qualified as financial scheme IFLA arbitrators and all were clearly intrigued to find out how that scheme had been adapted to meet the unique needs of determining a child arrangements dispute.

The problem of litigants in person and vulnerable witnesses: lessons from the criminal courts?
Tom Wilson - @tpwils
14 April 2016
In this article, Tom Wilson doubts the Court of Appeal's reasoning in Re K and H (Children) [2015] EWCA Civ 543, and examines alternative sources of legal representation.

'I have nothing to declare but my genius': a consideration of special contributions in Robertson v Robertson - are such arguments dead, disguised or revived?
Darren Hark
14 April 2016
Practitioners will be well-versed in hearing contentions from husbands and wives in divorce proceedings as to what contributions they have each made during the course of the marriage, and therefore why they should receive their fair shares.

Children arbitration overview
Suzanne Kingston, James Pirrie and Felicity Shedden - @jamespirrie & @FShedden
13 April 2016
15 years ago a number of family lawyers got together and thought that it may be sensible to mirror our colleagues in the civil litigation world by considering the idea of arbitration in the family law context.

False allegations: balancing the rights of sex abuse victims and those wrongly accused
Natasha Phillips - @SobukiRa
13 April 2016
While media outlets continue to focus on high profile cases involving child sexual abuse, a controversial development at the Goddard Inquiry has quietly taken place.

Family Law Arbitration: a better way to justice? - lecture to the Wordshipful Company of Arbitrators
12 April 2016
Master's Lecture given by Sir Hugh Bennett, 6 April 2016.

Camberley to Carlisle - where are we now on internal relocation?
Andrew Bainham
12 April 2016
The recent decision of the Court of Appeal in Re C (Internal Relocation) [2015] EWCA Civ 1305, [2016] 1 FLR (forthcoming, and reported at [2016] Fam Law 284) on the principles governing internal relocation of parents and children within the UK provides a timely opportunity to re-examine the legal principles which automatically govern such moves.

A day in the life of ... Victoria Walker (Partner and Head of Family, Simpson Millar LLP)
Victoria Walker - @tealovinglawyer
11 April 2016
I am a partner and head of Family at Simpson Millar LLP in our Wimbledon office. On a day-to-day basis I manage a caseload of Divorce and Financial Remedies cases, i supervise two trainees who carry out Private Children, Care and Divorce work, and also supervise an Assistant Solicitor who has a caseload of Care and complex Private Children.


PROPERTY: Liden v Burton [2016] EWCA Civ 275
Hearing Date: 02 March 2016
Lord Dyson MR, Lady Justice Sharp and Lord Justice Hamblen
Court of Appeal
The man’s appeal from a decision awarding his ex-partner an interest in a property amounting to £33,522 by virtue of proprietary estoppel was dismissed.

PUBLIC LAW CHILDREN: Re C (Children) [2016] EWCA Civ 356
Hearing Date: 07 April 2016
Lady Justice Black and Lord Justice Floyd
Court of Appeal
The mother’s appeal in care proceedings was allowed and the local authority appeal was remitted for rehearing.

JURISDICTION: Re N (Children) [2016] UKSC 15
Hearing Date: 13 April 2016
Lord Neuberger P, Lady Hale DP, Lord Kerr, Lord Wilson and Lord Carnwath
Supreme Court
The Supreme Court unanimously allowed the appeal from an order transferring the care proceedings pursuant to Art 15 of Brussels IIa.

PRIVATE LAW CHILDREN: Re I (Human Fertilisation and Emryology Act 2008) [2016] EWHC 791 (Fam)
Hearing Date: 12 April 2016
Sir James Munby, President of the Family Division
Family Division
A declaration of parentage was granted pursuant to s 55A of the Family Law Act 1986.

JURISDICTION: Re Z (Recognition of Foreign Order) [2016] EWHC 784 (Fam)
Hearing Date: 08 April 2016
Mr Justice Baker
Family Division
A declaration was made to the effect that orders made by the High Court of Ireland permitting emergency admission for treatment in the UK would be recognised in the jurisdiction of England and Wales.

Legislation & Guidance

The Access to Justice Act 1999 (Destination of Appeals) (Family Proceedings) (Amendment) Order 2016
18 April 2016
SI 2016/Draft: Article 2 of this Order amends the Access to Justice Act 1999 (Destination of Appeals) (Family Proceedings) Order 2014 (SI 2014/602) to provide for the route of appeal from certain decisions or orders of Circuit judges and Recorders sitting in the family court to be to the High Court, rather than the Court of Appeal, as provided by section 31K of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984 (c. 42) or (in so far as appeals against decisions of the family court relating to contempt of court are concerned) section 13(2A) of the Administration of Justice Act 1960 (c. 65).

Law Society guidance: Protecting your firm if you fall victim to a scam
12 April 2016
The Law Society has issued updated practice guidance on protecting your law firm if you fall victim to a scam.

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