Nullity and the composition of families

Weekly Family Law Update | February 26, 2021

Wife calls for reform of nullity law A wife whose husband had sought to have their marriage annulled for non-consummation has called for the law to be reformed. Under the current law a marriage can be declared null and void if one party can show that the marriage has not been consummated owing to the […]

Domestic abuse, similar fact evidence and child abuse

Weekly Family Law Update | January 28, 2021

Domestic Abuse Bill progresses The Government’s Domestic Abuse Bill has received its second reading in the House of Lords. The purpose of the Bill is to raise awareness and understanding of domestic abuse and its impact on victims, to further improve the effectiveness of the justice system in providing protection for victims of domestic abuse […]

Hearing starting times and a brain damaged child

Weekly Family Law Update | January 20, 2021

President concerned at long court hours The President of the Family Division Sir Andrew McFarlane has expressed concern over widespread reports of family court hearings starting as early as 8am or as late as 4.30pm, in response to the pressure of the backlog of cases, exacerbated by the closure of courts due to the pandemic. […]

A restraint order, a rent demand and ex-wives’ incomes

Weekly Family Law Update | January 14, 2021

Court restricts father’s right to make further applications The High Court has extended an order restraining a father from making further applications to the court regarding his children. In November 2018 Mrs Justice Knowles made an Extended Civil Restraint Order (‘ECRO’) with respect to the father, who had made seven applications for permission to appeal […]

A backlog of cases, human rights and international law

Weekly Family Law Update | December 19, 2020

Plan published to deal with backlog of cases The Family Justice Board, which oversees the family justice system, has produced a statement summarising the priority actions it intends to pursue to deal with the backlog of family cases. The Board says backlogs in private law cases (i.e. children cases not involving social services) have increased […]

Stalking link to domestic abuse and early divorce advice

Weekly Family Law Update | December 12, 2020

Stalking analysis reveals domestic abuse link The Crown Prosecution Service (‘CPS’) has reported that stalking is increasingly being recognised as a form of domestic abuse within the criminal justice system, with CPS analysis finding that the majority of offences are committed by ex-partners.  A record 2,288 charges were brought in 2019-20 – more than double […]

Domestic abuse, costs and the most expensive case

Weekly Family Law Update | December 5, 2020

Abuse victims advised to take civil action due to criminal system delays A report by the charity Victim Support on the impact of the pandemic upon victims of domestic abuse has found that the pandemic has created additional barriers to victims’ engagement with the criminal justice system, with many victims and survivors facing considerable waits […]

Divorce statistics and support for abuse victims

Weekly Family Law Update | November 28, 2020

Latest divorce statistics published The Office for National Statistics (‘ONS’) has published its latest statistics for divorces in England and Wales, for the year 2019. The main points were: 1. That there were 107,599 divorces of opposite-sex couples in 2019, increasing by 18.4% from 90,871 in 2018 The ONS states that the scale of this […]