Archives: Family

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Expert witnesses – legal aid

October 2020 | Family

The guidance on applying for prior authority for an expert who charges higher rates than those set out in the legal aid regulations has been amended. It includes new guideline rates for some experts. The changes include recommended further hours where additional parties need to be assessed for a psychological or psychiatric expert assessment; and …

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Procedure – various amendments

October 2020 | Family

A raft of amendments have been made under the FPR, particularly to a number of practice directions including: A new pilot PD36U (Pilot Provision: Service and notification of applications and orders under Part 4 FLA 1996): this is a temporary amendment relating to methods of service provision in view of Covid-19. Amendment to pilot PD36M …

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Children – Hague Convention

October 2020 | Family

The court can, under the 1980 Hague Convention, order a child’s return to a state other than that of their habitual residence at the relevant date of wrongful removal or retention. This is what the appeal court concluded in the case of a family who moved from Australia – where C was born – to …

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Children – abduction

October 2020 | Family

In earlier proceedings, an order for a nine-year-old boy’s (K) return to Russia had been made under the Hague Child Abduction Convention. F had made tactical attempts to avoid his son’s return to Russia but he argued that they were ‘entirely justified’. F had, for instance, arranged for K to make an application for asylum. …

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Finances – FDR

September 2020 | Family

Finances on divorce can be resolved efficiently and effectively though the private financial dispute resolution (FDR) process, argues the author of this article, with a higher success rate than court-based settlements. She writes against the background that Covid-19 has necessarily prompted a series of judicial guidance on how family cases are to be dealt with …

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Financial remedies – pensions

September 2020 | Family

Three particular pensions-related rulings have followed the July 2019 publication by the Pensions Advisory Group (PAG) of its essential guide to the treatment of pensions on divorce. Typically, the issues in such cases are: whether pensions should be divided as to capital value or income; ringfencing pensions acquired pre-marriage or during a long period of …

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Financial remedies – property valuations

September 2020 | Family

The pandemic is impacting on how the matrimonial assets pot is to be decided on divorce. Practitioners are advising in a climate where property prices have fallen and the market is yet to bounce back. The author considers the pertinent issues, particularly property valuation and the timing of sale; division of the matrimonial home; and …

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Procedure – contempt

September 2020 | Family

An updated practice direction on committal for contempt in open court has been issued by the LCJ. It applies to most committal proceedings, including contempt in the face of the court, and supplements existing provisions, the FPR 2010, COP Rules 2007, CrimPR 2014 and related PDs. Source: www.judiciary.uk.

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Adoption – Covid-19

September 2020 | Family

A reminder of the temporary amendments to the rules in place relating to children’s social care in England. These came into force on 24 April because of Covid-19 and, for the most part, are due to expire at the end of this month (September). The Adoption and Children (Coronavirus) (Amendment) Regulations 2020 introduced the changes …

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Procedure – service

September 2020 | Family

Pilot practice direction 36U relating to the service of Part 4 FLA 1996 applications, orders and notification to the police is now in force. Related guidance from Theis J, acting president of the Family Division, sets out the background to the pilot and why the Family Procedure Rule Committee considered the temporary modifications to part …

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