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Guide to Good Practice on working with vulnerable clients

In reality all family law clients should be considered as vulnerable, they are usually in a state of heightened emotion when they first meet with their lawyer, and we are usually asking them to explain very personal and upsetting matters with someone they have not met before. There are of course very different degrees of vulnerability and how best to support and assist our clients can be an area of concern and confusion, particularly to less experienced practitioners. This guide is designed to set out some best practice guidance on working together with vulnerable clients.

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Guide to Good Practice on Working with the Bar in Family Cases

Family proceedings (whether court-based, collaborative or otherwise) should be conducted cost effectively without compromising the quality of advice that clients crave and deserve, balancing the benefits of any steps taken against the likely costs – financial or emotional. Many family cases are now concluded without the involvement of barristers. However, certain clients will benefit from representation by an effective team of lawyer and barrister in order to achieve an appropriate balance between cost and quality. This guidance note offers advice on best practice for solicitors/legal executives when working with a barrister.

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Guide to Good Practice in fertility cases

Issues regarding fertility law have increased significantly in the last few years and members are now likely to encounter such issues on a more frequent basis. There are family lawyers who have a particular specialism in fertility law but it is an area in which we should all be able to give advice and assistance when requested. This guide aims to assist our members on best practice in this area.

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Guide to Good Practice in cohabitation cases

Non-married cohabiting relationships look set to continue to increase year on year, so advising clients embarking on cohabitation, those already living together wanting to understand their ‘rights’ and those whose cohabiting relationship has broken down, will form an increasing part of the workload of family lawyers. This guide aims to assist Resolution members and their conveyancing lawyer colleagues to manage these cases effectively, in accordance with our Code of Practice.

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Guide to Good Practice on funding options

It is very common, particularly once court proceedings have commenced, for one or both parties to struggle to meet ongoing legal fees. The parties are usually already struggling to adapt to financially supporting two separate households and may be unable to release funds from assets held in joint names, for example.

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Guide to Good Practice on social media

Social media can be a useful resource for family solicitors to connect with the public and other professionals, publicise campaigns, raise the profile of members and communicate about the work we do. As it can potentially reach a very wide audience, we must be careful about how our use of social media impacts on our client-related work.

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Guide to Good Practice on the service of documents

Service of documents is a particularly sensitive area. It is sometimes essential that documents are served upon the other party personally, but this could inflame the situation and be counterproductive to the aims and ethos of the Resolution Code of Practice.

This guide looks at the issues and ways in which service of documents can be achieved in a constructive way, in order to avoid increasing the acrimony between the parties.

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Guide to Good Practice on working with litigants in person

Subject to the rules on vexatious litigants, anyone is entitled to act in person. However, there is a tendency to treat people who do as a nuisance. With the reforms to family justice, cut backs on legal aid and changes in behaviour in relation to the ways in which people approach family relationship breakdown, it is increasingly likely that you will deal with litigants in person and you should consider how your dealings will differ from those with another lawyer.

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