U v U – WLR Daily

Posted November 8th, 2016 in appeals, children, custody, family courts, law reports by sally

U v U

‘The parents of four children, two girls now aged 16 and 14 and two boys aged 12 and 6 years old, were married in Afghanistan in 1999 and came to the United Kingdom in 2000. They were all now British citizens. From 2011 the family experienced growing disagreement between the parents, and in 2012 the father married a second woman in secret which his wife did not know about until 2014. Following a number of incidents that year in which the police had sometimes been involved the father changed the locks to the marital home, the upshot being that the mother went to alternative accommodation with the three eldest children and the youngest boy stayed with the father and his second wife. By September 2014 the relationship between the parents had broken down. Proceedings in the case had been conducted before a High Court judge over some 14 hearings. At the first main fact-finding hearing in early 2015 in respect of child placement arrangements the judge made adverse findings against the mother including that she had caused the three older children emotional harm by her negative comments and outbursts against the father, that none of the mother’s allegations against the father justified ceasing contact between them and their father, and that the judge’s concern was to restore their relationship despite the mother’s resistance to contact between them and the father. The appointment of an expert psychiatrist from a well-known child health clinic was agreed between the parties to make an assessment of the family and also to offer therapy. The expert was able to achieve meetings between the three older children and the father, but unsupervised contact between the youngest child and the mother was not achieved until early 2016. At the latter contact session with the mother the child’s fringe was found to have been cut in a rough and ready manner. Each party blamed the other for the incident. It also emerged that the father had concealed a device on the child which recorded the conversation between the mother and the child. That showed that the mother had asked whether there was a new baby in the father’s house. At the welfare hearing in March 2016 the judge had four full reports from the expert who was also present and had made some recommendations, there was no CAFCASS officer’s report, the judge made further adverse findings against the mother including that she had cut the child’s hair, that she had assaulted the father and was unlikely to change her attitude towards him or that she would promote a positive relationship between the father and the three older children, that none of her allegations against the father had been proved, that at an earlier stage he had found that the three children had had an enjoyable holiday with the father in Barcelona but that they now refused to live with him because of the emotional harm caused by the mother’s attitude, and he concluded that the father was committed to the children, that the second wife was a force for good, that he was minded to order that all the children should live with the father but in the event only the older boy was ordered to reside with the father and the boy’s younger brother, noting that such an arrangement was contrary to the ordinary course for siblings to be in the same household. The mother appealed, contending that the welfare analysis was insufficient, that the older children’s wishes and feelings had not been properly considered and that a guardian should be appointed for their separate representation’

WLR Daily, 20th October 2016

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

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Negotiating in the Shadow of the Court: Mediation in parallel with litigation – Family Law Week

‘Madeleine Reardon, barrister of 1 King’s Bench Walk, considers the role of mediation in the course of family proceedings, practical issues arising therefrom and, in particular, confidentiality of the mediation process.’

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Family Law Week, 27th October 2016

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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Finance and Divorce Update October 2016 – Family Law Week

‘Edward Heaton, Principal Associate and Jane Booth, Associate, both of Mills & Reeve LLP, analyse the news and case law relating to financial remedies and divorce during September 2016.’

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Family Law Week, 23rd October 2016

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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Children: Private Law Update (October 2016) – Family Law Week

Posted October 13th, 2016 in children, family courts, guardianship, news, perverting the course of justice by tracey

‘Alex Verdan QC of 4 Paper Buildings reviews recent important judgments in private law children cases.’

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Family Law Week, 12th October 2016

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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One-third of family court cases have no representative at all – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted September 30th, 2016 in family courts, legal aid, legal representation, news by tracey

‘More than a third of cases in the family court have no legal representative for either party, new statistics show.’

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Law Society’s Gazette, 29th September 2016

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

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In re W (Children) (Child Arrangements Orders: Non-molestation Orders) – WLR Daily

Posted September 21st, 2016 in children, custody, family courts, foreign jurisdictions, law reports, treaties by tracey

In re W (Children) (Child Arrangements Orders: Non-molestation Orders):[2016] EWHC 2226 (Fam)

‘The parties married in Russia in September 2010 and came to live in London in August 2014. In June 2016, following the breakdown of the marriage, the father issued applications in the High Court, inter alia, for orders under the court’s inherent powers to locate his step-son, A, aged ten and his son, J, aged two, a prohibited steps order preventing their removal from the jurisdiction and a request to the Russian Embassy and the British Passport Office that no further passports be issued until further order of the court. Location and passport orders were made and the children located. Meanwhile, on 19 July 2016 the mother sought and was granted an ex parte non-molestation order against the father by a district judge in the family court. The order stated that it was to endure until 19 July 2017 and that the order would be considered at a further hearing on a date to be fixed by the court officer on request by the respondent father. The father issued further applications in the family court for child arrangement orders in respect of the children.’

WLR Daily, 10th August 2016

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

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MPs call for end to abusive men using courts against families – The Guardian

‘The government must carry out a full review of family courts to stop them being used by violent men to perpetuate abuse against their partners and children, MPs have said.’

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The Guardian, 15th September 2016

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Smile: High Court judge uses emoji in official ruling – Daily Telegraph

Posted September 15th, 2016 in children, custody, family courts, judges, judgments, news, terrorism by tracey

‘It is the kind of document in which one might expect to find daunting legal terminology, interspersed with Latin phrases or even a smattering of Norman French.But one High Court judge has gone to previously unheard-of lengths to make a judgment in a family court case comprehensible even for the children it affects – by replacing dry terminology with a battery of down-to-earth phrases and even a smiley face symbol.’

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Daily Telegraph, 14th September 2016

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

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Acquitted dad Craig Beattie ‘killed baby son’ family judge said – BBC News

Posted September 8th, 2016 in child abuse, criminal justice, family courts, homicide, news, reports by tracey

‘A father who was acquitted by a jury of killing his six-week-old son has been named as the person responsible for his death in a ruling by a high court judge.’

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BBC News, 7th September 2016

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

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Legal representation in care proceedings under review – Law Society’s Gazette

Posted September 7th, 2016 in care orders, children, family courts, legal representation, news by sally

‘A government review into representation of children in public law cases could lead to lawyers being removed at certain stages in proceedings.’

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Law Society’s Gazette, 5th September 2016

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

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Separated couple called daughter by different names, court hears – The Independent

Posted August 30th, 2016 in children, custody, family courts, news, parental rights by sally

‘A separated couple called their three-year-old daughter different names, a family court judge has heard.’

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The Independent, 30th August 2016

Source: www.independent.co.uk

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Canines in court: therapy dogs making the wait for a verdict ‘more human’ – The Guardian

Posted August 30th, 2016 in animals, courts, dogs, family courts, mental health, news by sally

‘Unique in the UK, Chelmsford county court hosts therapy dogs each week, to reduce stress and make court less intimidating.’

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The Guardian, 28th August 2016

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

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Father who backs ‘harmful’ alternative cancer medication should have baby taken into care, says judge – Daily Telegraph

Posted August 24th, 2016 in autism, cancer, care orders, children, family courts, health, medicines, news by sally

‘A baby boy whose father advocates the use of “harmful alternative medication” should be taken into council care, a family court judge has decided.’

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Daily Telegraph, 23rd August 2016

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

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Force family lawyers to offer fixed fees, consumer panel suggests – Legal Futures

Posted August 24th, 2016 in competition, dentists, family courts, fees, legal services, news, statistics by sally

‘Family law specialists should be required to work under fixed fees, the Legal Services Consumer Panel has suggested as it ramped up its call for regulatory intervention to improve transparency in the market.’

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Legal Futures, 24th August 2016

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

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Courts must prepare for significant increases in care cases, says top judge – Local Government Lawyer

Posted August 24th, 2016 in care orders, children, families, family courts, news, pilot schemes, statistics by sally

‘The family courts must plan on the basis that there will continue to be significant increases in care cases, the President of the Family Division has warned.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 23rd August 2016

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

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Ellie Butler murder: Father displayed ‘pattern of impulsive violence’ – BBC News

‘A man who murdered his six-year-old daughter was described as displaying a “pattern of impulsive violence” months before she died, it has been revealed.’

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BBC News, 30th July 2016

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

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Everything You Need To Know About Secrecy In The Family Courts – RightsInfo

‘One of the central principles of the family justice system has long been ensuring the privacy and confidentiality of the families involved. Families going through divorces, child custody proceedings or cases involving child abuse have typically had their identities and the details of their cases protected. But over recent years there has been a rising perception that the family courts are secretive and unaccountable – sparking calls for increased transparency, and raising important questions for human rights.’

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Rightsinfo, 27th July 2016

Source: www.rightsinfo.org

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Seen and heard? Children as witnesses in family proceedings – Family Law Week

‘Damian Stuart, Barrister, FOURTEEN, re-visits Baroness Hale’s seminal speech in Re W (Children) (Abuse: Oral Evidence) in the light of Lord Justice McFarlane’s recent judgment in Re E (A Child).’

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Family Law Week, 22nd July 2016

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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iPhone evidence ‘could be more effective than court hearing’ – Law Society’s Gazette

‘Resolving neighbour disputes using iPhone evidence and a video hearing might be more effective than the parties travelling several miles to court, a senior government official has said, outlining significant developments to modernise the justice system.’

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Law Society’s Gazette, 21st July 2016

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

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Finance & Divorce Update, July 2016 – Family Law week

‘Edward Heaton, Principal Associate and Jane Booth, Associate, both of Mills & Reeve LLP, analyse the news and case law relating to financial remedies and divorce during June 2016.’

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Family Law Week, 15th July 2016

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

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