Why an inquisitorial system for family courts won’t work – Halsbury’s Law Exchange

‘The Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas, delivered a speech last week in which he radically called for a judge-led inquisitorial system to be considered for family and civil courts. He commented that, within the family law arena, the current adversarial method of dealing with cases was ill-suited to both the types of cases seen there and the significant numbers of litigants in person who now make up large numbers of the users of that system.’

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Halsbury’s Law Exchange, 12th March 2014

Source: www.halsburyslawexchange.co.uk

Mann v Mann – WLR daily

Mann v Mann: [2014] EWHC 537 (Fam);   [2014] WLR (D)  114

‘In proceedings to enforce an order for ancillary relief, not governed by FPR Pt 9, where the parties had made an agreement to engage in alternative dispute resolution (“ADR”) the court could exercise its powers under FPR r 3.3(1)(b) to enable ADR to take place even if one party was trying to back out of that agreement. Although it was not possible to compel the parties to take part in mediation, since that would operate as a bar to enforcement, it was possible to robustly encourage mediation by means of an “Ungley order” to make it clear that an unreasonable refusal to participate in the ADR might well attract a costs sanction.’

WLR Daily, 5th March 2014

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

Couple in custody feud told: ‘sit down and have a cup of tea’ – Daily Telegraph

Posted February 19th, 2014 in children, custody, dispute resolution, news by sally

‘Man and woman embroiled in years of legal action over children suggested by judge to “sit down around the kitchen table”.’

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Daily Telegraph, 19th February 2014

Source: www.telegraph.co.uk

Family law in crisis – New Law Journal

‘Cuts to legal aid have thrown family proceedings into chaos, say Kim Beatson, Caroline Bowden & Ellen Lucas.’

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New Law Journal, 10th February 2014

Source: www.newlawjournal.co.uk

“Mandatory” mediation – not mandatory enough! – Halsbury’s Law Exchange

Posted February 10th, 2014 in bills, case management, dispute resolution, divorce, domestic violence, legal aid, news by tracey

‘In recent weeks there has been widespread reporting of government measures to introduce “mandatory mediation” for separating couples. This will be brought in under the Children and Families Bill, which is due to come into force in April. So, what exactly will the proposals mean? Will they actually result in couples moving away courts, and resolving their disputes through mediation, as the government wants?’

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Halsburys Law Exchange, 10th February 2014

Source: www.halsburyslawexchange.co.uk

New law will keep separating parents and couples away from court – Ministry of Justice

Posted January 8th, 2014 in dispute resolution, divorce, families, news by sally

‘Separating parents and couples will be helped to avoid stressful court battles under a new law being introduced by the government.’

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Ministry of Justice, 7th January 2014

Source: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice

Finance and Divorce Update – Family Law Week

‘Jessica Craigs, senior solicitor and David Salter, Joint Head of Family Law at Mills & Reeve LLP analyse the financial remedies and divorce news and cases published in December.’

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Family Law Week, 2nd January 2014

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

What role does mediation play in social housing? – Hardwicke Chambers

‘At a case management hearing in the LVT (as it then was) back in March 2013, the chair said that, whilst normally he would direct that the parties to that dispute should attempt mediation, he was aware that it was “usually pointless” doing so where public funds are at stake as public bodies generally cannot justify the arbitrary reductions that can be necessary for a mediation to succeed, and fear creating some form of precedent. Misguided as I thought the chair was, it did seem likely that he might have been speaking from many years of experience.’

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Hardwicke Chambers, 3rd December 2013

Source: www.hardwicke.co.uk

Finance and Divorce Update – Family Law Week

‘Jessica Craigs, senior solicitor and David Salter, Joint Head of Family Law at Mills & Reeve LLP analyse the financial remedies and divorce news and cases published in November.’

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Family Law Week, 6th December 2013

Source: www.familylawweek.co.uk

Aspect Contracts (Asbestos) Ltd v Higgins Construction Ltd – WLR Daily

Aspect Contracts (Asbestos) Ltd v Higgins Construction Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 1541; [2013] WLR (D) 463

‘On a true construction of an implied term in a construction contract a party was entitled, following an adjudication in which it had been the loser, but where it maintained that it had made an over-payment, to bring proceedings for repayment; and the applicable limitation period ran from the date of the over-payment.’

WLR Daily, 29th November 2013

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

‘Awful conflict’: Judge despairs as couple’s divorce after 43 years leads to £700,000 bill – The Independent

Posted November 18th, 2013 in costs, dispute resolution, divorce, judges, news by sally

“A wealthy family seems to be ‘tearing itself apart’ in a legal battle which has already cost more than £700,000, a High Court judge has said.”

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The Independent, 15th November 2013

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Mediation: No duty to put meat on the bones – Hardwicke Chambers

Posted October 30th, 2013 in appeals, dispute resolution, duty of care, news, solicitors by sally

“The scent and smoke and sweat of a mediation can be nauseating at three in the morning, as Ian Fleming might have written had he declined a successful career as a thriller writer in favour of the less glamorous life of a commercial litigator. It is a sentiment which clearly resonates even in the Court of Appeal, as revealed in the Court’s judgment in Frost v Wake Smith & Tofields [2013] EWCA Civ 772 last month.”

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Hardwicke Chambers, 17th October 2013

Source: www.hardwicke.co.uk

Where now for mediation? Extending the Halsey guidelines – 11 Stone Buildings

Posted October 30th, 2013 in appeals, costs, dispute resolution, news, penalties by sally

“Since the case of Halsey v Milton Keynes General NHS Trust [2004] 1 WLR 3002, the manner in which the Court may encourage parties to settle their disputes by mediation has been largely settled. Thus, the court should not compel parties to mediatebut it may engage in robust encouragement. Importantly, a successful party may be deprived of some or all of its costs if it unreasonably refuses to mediate. The burden is on the unsuccessful party to demonstrate unreasonableness.”

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11 Stone Buildings, October 2013

Source: www.11sb.com

PGF II SA v OMFS Co 1 Ltd – WLR Daily

PGF II SA v OMFS Co 1 Ltd [2013] EWCA Civ 1288 ; [2013] WLR (D) 405

“As a general rule, complete silence in the face of a serious invitation to consider alternative dispute resolution amounted to unreasonable conduct and the judge in his discretion could impose costs sanctions.”

WLR Daily, 23rd October 2013

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

Why breaking up is getting even harder to do – BBC News

“Dozens of centres designed to help couples split up amicably are in danger of closure.”

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BBC News, 19th October 2013

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Solicitors and consumers split over widening ombudsman’s remit to unregulated providers – Legal Futures

Posted October 3rd, 2013 in dispute resolution, Law Society, legal ombudsman, legal profession, news by sally

“Solicitors and consumer representatives have come out on opposite sides of the Legal Ombudsman’s (LeO) proposal to extend its remit to the estimated 130,000 unregulated legal services providers operating in England and Wales.”

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Legal Futures, 2nd October 2013

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Binns and another v Firstplus Financial Group plc – WLR Daily

Binns and another v Firstplus Financial Group plc [2013] EWHC 2436 (QB); [2013] WLR (D) 361

“Where a claimant had obtained an award pursuant to alternative dispute resolution (‘ADR’) and subsequently brought a civil claim where the only potential advantage in bringing that litigation was the possibility of an additional award in respect of legal costs, the claim was to be struck out under CPR r 3.4(2).”

WLR Daily, 24th July 2013

Source: www.iclr.co.uk

Mediation services hit by legal aid cuts, Ministry of Justice figures reveal – The Guardian

“Government attempts to promote mediation as an alternative to expensive courtroom divorce and custody battles are failing, according to figures obtained through freedom of information requests.”

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The Guardian, 30th September 2013

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

MoJ proposes online scheme for asbestos victims – Law Society’s Gazette

“Victims of asbestos-related disease are to be offered a process for out-of-court compensation along the lines of the RTA Portal, under proposals to support mesothelioma sufferers announced by the Ministry of Justice today.”

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Law Society’s Gazette, 24th July 2013

Source: www.lawgazette.co.uk

Solicitor “not in breach of duties” by failing to facilitate binding mediation agreement – OUT-LAW.com

Posted June 24th, 2013 in appeals, dispute resolution, negligence, news, solicitors by sally

“A solicitor cannot be held responsible if parties to mediation do not immediately reach a final binding agreement, the Court of Appeal has confirmed.”

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OUT-LAW.com, 24th June 2013

Source: www.out-law.com