Family Law

A Step Forward in Equality

A bill recently passed has extended the law in relation to  civil partnerships . It will soon be the case that opposite sex couples will be able to enter into civil partnerships , meaning they will obtain financial benefits without being married. ...

How do I start divorce proceedings?

Divorce proceedings can be started by either spouse once they have married for at least 12 months. A divorce petition cannot be issued within the first year of the marriage unless there are exceptional circumstances. To start divorce proceedings, the...

Why make a Prenuptial Agreement?

When a couple marries, they unsurprisingly do not wish to contemplate the idea of separation and naturally believe that they will remain married for life. However, in reality marriage breakdowns and divorce are common place in today’s society. ...

No fault divorce is coming

Justice Secretary David Gauke has confirmed that legislation will be enacted in the next session of parliament to allow for a no-fault divorce. This means that separating couples will no longer need to allocate blame in the petition or wait for years to...

Who are CAFCASS?

CAFCASS, the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service, looks after the interests of children involved in family proceedings. It is a service that is independent of the courts and social services, but works under the rules of the Family Court ...

When can I apply for Decree Absolute?

The Petitioner in divorce proceedings can make their application for Decree Absolute after six weeks and one day have passed since the granting of their Decree Nisi. However, the Petitioner may be advised to consider waiting to apply for their Decree...

How can we agree the division of time with our children?

When couples separate a number of key decisions will need to be made particularly where there are children involved. Most importantly, the separating parents will need to decide where the children are going to live and the time that they are going to spend...

Can I make a financial claim in respect of my children?

If you are a parent or have a child arrangements order confirming that the child lives with you, you may be able to claim against a parent in respect of the financial requirements or needs of the child living with you. Under  Schedule 1  of...

What is an Occupation Order?

An Occupation Order regulates or restricts the right of occupation of the family home between family members and is a form of injunction. Orders can either be declaratory or restrictive in nature.   For example, they may declare an...

Child Immunisations: Disagreement

The Family court recently made an Order that a child should receive immunisations despite the father objecting to the same.   The child concerned was a 5 year old girl. Whilst her parents were together she received all vaccinations as recommended by...

Christmas Day Divorce

Official figures have been released this week confirming that a total of 13 couples started online divorce applications on Christmas Day 2018. A total of 455 online applications were submitted during the Christmas and New Year period in total. It is...

Divorce Day 2019

Monday 7th January 2019 is being dubbed ‘divorce day’ due to the reported spike in the number of couples considering ending their marriages after the festive periods. It is suggested that married couples experiencing troubles may wait until...

Divorce rate for heterosexual couples lowest since 1973

Data published by the Office for National Statistics shows that there were 8.4 divorces of heterosexual couples per 1,000 married men and women last year. This is a 45-year low and a 6 per cent decrease from 2016. However, divorce rates between same sex...

What is a Consent Order?

A Consent Order reflects the terms of a financial agreement reached between separating spouses . The Order is agreed and signed by both parties and forwarded to the Court for the Court’s approval. Once approved by the Court the agreement is legally...

No fault divorce - Have your say!

The government consultation into divorce law reform is open until 10 December. To ensure your voice is heard click here  and get involved.  If you are currently going through a divorce or separation or are considering splitting with your...

Do I need to pay child maintenance?

Both parents are legally responsible for the financial costs of raising their children. If parents separate the parent who the children do not live with may be required to pay child maintenance to the parent the children live with. Child maintenance is...

Can I get a divorce if my spouse is in prison?

The fact that your spouse is in prison has no bearing on the validity of the divorce provided that all the necessary requirements are met.  In some circumstances it can be used as proof that the marriage has irrevocably broken down e.g if the reason...

World Cup Fever Saw Rise In Domestic Violence

In a BBC report, the lead officer for football policing in England and Wales stated that there was a "significant rise" in domestic abuse reports during the World Cup. More than 60 incidents were reported after England's semi-final loss,...

West Midlands at the forefront of financial proceedings pilot scheme

The West Midlands region is currently piloting an electronic based filing scheme for financial remedy proceedings. Although in its early stages, the scheme requires Court forms and evidential documents to be filed at court electronically. The scheme aims...

Ant McPartlin gets 'telling off' by judge

A High Court Judge stated that “there isn't one law for the famous and one for the rest of the community” after TV star Ant McPartlin failed to attend a preliminary hearing in relation to his divorce from Lisa Armstrong. Mr...
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