In the papers today...

Three stories that caught my eye this morning:

The Guardian reports that: "The number of divorce and separation cases being fought in the courts that involve children has risen, with £151m of legal aid money being spent on litigation, according to figures released today." They quote research by Mishcon de Reya which "shows that more than half of parents going through divorce and separation went to court to challenge issues relating to their children". The Guardian goes on: "The increase in proceedings is causing delays to private law cases, a panel of experts will hear at a debate in parliament today, with alarming implications for children involved." No doubt we will be hearing more about this as the day progresses...

Meanwhile, one divorce which most definitely did not involve minor children was that of Bertie and Jessie Wood who, at the age of 98, were the oldest couple in the world to get a divorce, according to the Daily Mail. This is, in fact, the case of Baker v Rowe, which I reported in Family Lore Case Digest on Saturday.

Lastly, I have mentioned here before the phenomenon of divorce cakes, which originated in America. I'm not sure if this is exactly news, but the Daily Mail reports today that the trend has reached these shores. Yummy...


  1. The dispute over the number of separating parents who go to court over custody and contact is a long one.

    The government has always (since 2002 or thereabouts) quoted a figure of only 10%. This is certainly too low, and comes from a study which measured something else entirely.

    Margaret Hodge put the figure at 40% (in a private letter), but was misinterpreting the same research (!).

    F4J quoted a figure of between 30% and 40%, which was arrived at quite laboriously. Part of the trouble is that you cannot count separating parents in the same way you can count divorcing parents.

    So I am surprised by this figure from Mishcon de Reya of more than half. It seems very high and I'd be interested to see their working; have you a link?

  2. Yes, it seemed very high to me too. From my own experience I would say that the figure was between 10 and 20 percent, at least for divorcing couples.

    I don't have a link to the research, but hope to have more information on this shortly.


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