service

International divorce and service of documents

The divorce process requires the court to be satisfied that the responding party is aware of the proceedings and has been given the opportunity to engage in those proceedings. To this end, the court takes steps to ensure that service of relevant documentation upon the respondent party is correctly conducted. Service is particularly challenging in cases involving an international divorce. …

disclosure

Disclosure refresh – is all the information provided?

To assist in the consideration of negotiation and settlement, the principles of full and frank disclosure are essential to facilitating meaningful discussions. Deriving from common law principles, the duty of financial disclosure is the foundation of financial remedy proceedings. The general rule is that the court makes its decision on the basis of all available relevant evidence. To enable the …

non-molestation orders

Non-molestation orders data under review

Since 2013, when LASPO came into force, it has been reported by the National Audit Office that up to 80% of private family law cases before the courts involve at least one party that has no legal representation. This is an increase of some 30%, or approximately 18,500 families per year, on pre-LASPO levels. Within this same time frame, the …

partnership

Civil partnership to be made open to all

Civil partnership is to be available to heterosexual couples following the recent Supreme Court case of Steinfeld and Keidan v Secretary of State for International Development [2018]. Many family law practitioners had urged the government to extend the scope of civil partnership after the Supreme Court’s ruling in Steinfeld and Keidan, wherein the court found that there was no justification for the discrimination …

transparency

Transparency on the increase in family courts

Running from 1 October 2018 until 30 June 2019, family law courts in England Wales are now operating a pilot for “duly authorised” lawyers to “blog” about report on private hearings. However, there are still some restrictions and rules in place to protect the parties’ privacy. The greater transparency of these hearings is operating for a pilot period, with rules set …