We bring together a selection of digital resources and learning materials that can be accessed to learn at home.
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With the outbreak of Covid-19 many of you will not be at your offices to receive your printed copy of The Review but help is at hand. For every issue we will be publishing the articles here in the Knowledge and Resources section of our website as well as the pdf of the printed version.
This guidance for Family and County Court Judges through the COVID-19 pandemic was issued by the Judiciary of England and Wales on 23 March 2020.
During this time of special arrangements for everyone due to the Coronavirus outbreak we are aware that all our members are doing their upmost to continue to serve the needs of clients.
As with most areas of contentious law, having to instruct a criminal or family lawyer is seldom a happy process for the client. Unfortunately, the nature of relationship breakdown means that all too often family proceedings result in the need for criminal advice.
The president of the family division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, has issued the following guidance which should be followed with immediate effect by all levels of the Family Court and in the High Court Family Division.
Find resources on mediation, collaborative practice, arbitration and more.
Family courts in England and Wales are increasingly dealing with international family law cases – much more so than even just a few years ago – indeed there is every likelihood that Brexit will increase the amount of litigation in England and Wales.
Adele Ballantyne, Director of Eleda Consultancy and Marcie Shaoul Director of Rolling Stone Coaching have come together to talk about how to effectively build online relationships with clients.
The aim of this guidance note is to make more efficient the process by which initial enquiries are made of experts and by which they are instructed. It is hoped that the precedents can become widely adopted as through familiarity these benefits will become enhanced. However it provides guidance on the most common questions and issues that arise, but with the warning to practitioners to focus on the specific needs of each case rather than a routine adoption of what can be no more than a model.
Clients going through separation and divorce often ask questions about how best to manage the impact of the process on their children. As family lawyers we may not feel especially equipped or trained to address these queries. Many clients will not seek help from other professionals, such as counsellors or psychologists, so our role as legal advisers provides an important opportunity to provide simple and constructive information and advice that can help these parents put their children at the forefront of the process.
Surrogacy is an area of family law that is on the rise and many practitioners all over the country are being asked to give advice. Whilst there are surrogacy lawyers who specialise in this work, all of us should be equipped to deal with a surrogacy enquiry and to refer on where necessary.
A revised practice direction came into effect on 23 July 2018 relating to the preparation of bundles within court proceedings. Revised PD27A gives instructions on how to prepare bundles for cases in the Family Court and High Court. The new practice direction applies to all court hearings before magistrates and judges sitting in the Family Court, and judges sitting in the Family Division of the High Court. It applies to bundles being lodged for the first time in a case, or whether they are being re-lodged for a further hearing.
Marital agreements are becoming an everyday part of many family lawyers’ workload and it is in recognition of this increasing role that this guidance note on dealing with them has been revised. If these agreements are not a mainstay of your practice then it is important for you to consider instructing specialist counsel to provide an opinion on the content of the proposed agreement, review the advice you have given or draft the agreement itself.
There is a fundamental principle that full and frank financial disclosure is needed in order for any consensus to be capable of forming a binding agreement, arbitral award and/or court order, irrespective of the process used to get there. This principle has been established for many years, although tested from time to time in the courts – sometimes with unexpected results. The law continues to develop.
The object of all dispute resolution is to clarify facts and narrow issues. The use of experts may be considered in child-related situations, including proceedings. Those involved in assisting parties, including the court, may be helped by an expert’s findings in relation to injuries or medical complaints, psychological problems including attachments, or even how children have reacted in a supervised contact centre.
The Family Procedure Rules 2010 (FPR 2010) came into force on 6 April 2011 and made a number of changes to the way in which familiar documents need to be presented.
This practice guide is not intended to set out all of the forms that are in place; the list of forms is extensive and we recommend that you make yourself aware of them. The purpose of this guide is to highlight the key points in relation to the requirements when finalising and submitting documents in relation to family proceedings. All references are to the FPR 2010, unless otherwise stated.
This guide is intended to assist practitioners in advising clients on when expert evidence is required, and instructing the expert in such a way as will be of maximum benefit to the client in assisting them, or the court, in reaching a resolution of a matter in dispute between the parties.
It was heartening to see Sir Andrew McFarlane, the new President of the Family Division, and Sir James Munby, the former President, open their discussion at the PSU ‘Future of the Family Division’ event in October by talking about the importance of wellbeing for family law professionals.
Resolution members have increasingly found they must work with litigants in person (LiPs).
In this article we address some key questions you may have when working with litigants in person and provide some top tips for communicating with your client when a litigant in person is involved.
In this podcast, Nicola Wallace and Catherine Wood QC discuss advocacy in family law.
In this podcast, Denise Ingamells, Head of London SPIPs at RCJ Advice, and Marc Etherington from Resolution’s Parenting After Parting Committee, discuss how the Separated Parents Information Programme works.
In this audio recording of their workshop, Gillian Bishop and Felicity Shedden, explore how parenting co-ordination supports parents in high conflict to implement final child arrangements orders or parenting agreements.
The procedure for financial dispute resolution appointments (FDRs) is set out in Part 9.17 of the Family Procedure Rules 2010 (FPR) and Practice Direction 9A (PD 9A). They are meetings “held for the purposes of discussion and negotiation”, "to reduce the tension which inevitably arises in family disputes and facilitating settlement of those disputes" (para 6.1 PD 9A).
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.
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.
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.
One of the most important aspects of a family lawyer's job is to draft documents on behalf of clients. The documentation can take many different forms and it is often these documents that are pivotal in resolving disputes between parties, whether at a court hearing or in negotiations.
This practice guide provides an overview of working within the Codes of Practice when faced with complex and sensitive issues involving Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). It does not seek to be a ‘how to guide’, as there are many publications available for you to refer to.