Coronavirus bulletin, edition 3
Tuesday, 31 March 2020
- HMCTS is accelerating plans to move processes over to digital platforms in order to maintain an effective justice system through the pandemic. Due to unprecedented demand there is a backlog of new registrations for MyHMCTS, the online portal to manage applications within the Family Court. The Court Service are working their way through the backlog but if you are experiencing persistent issues please email the helpdesk. The portal can be used for divorce and financial remedy (including contested FR if you are in a ‘pilot’ area).
- A greater reliance on digital platforms is already one of the legacies of Covid-19 being played out in real time. With somewhat fortunate timing, the team behind MyHMCTS are in the process of developing a ‘professional users’ platform and they want to understand more about our users.
- Wider discussions are taking place across the Ministry of Justice and Government about the needs of legal aid providers facing cash flow problems. In the meantime, there are ways firms can seek financial assistance from the Legal Aid Agency under existing regulations. Claims can be submitted immediately for processing.
- The Department for Education has issued new guidance to service providers of vulnerable children and young people (public law children).This includes questions and answers about the provisions being made for them.
- The Nuffield Family Justice Observatory has a new initiative to help professionals to maintain safe contact arrangements for children and families during the crisis, and also provides useful resources for those working in private or public children law.