News Brief: A case, more rules, more forms

The Court of Appeal gave its judgment in Traversa v Freddi yesterday. For those who have not followed the case, the husband sought financial relief under Part III of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984, after the wife had taken divorce proceedings in Italy. Unfortunately for the husband, his application was heard after the Court of Appeal judgment in Agbaje, and as a result was dismissed. After the Supreme Court overturned the Court of Appeal decision in Agbaje, Mr Traversa appealed. Unsurprisingly, his appeal was successful, although the case also has a European element to it, unlike Agbaje.

Keen family lawyers may have noticed Jordans Family Law have been publishing the Practice Directions supplemental to the new Family Procedure Rules. I am not entirely sure why the new regime has been laid out in such a piecemeal fashion, but I suppose there must be a good reason for it. To keep things as simple as possible, I am only putting links to what I consider to be the most important practice directions on Family Lore News.

Meanwhile, the second batch of forms to accompany the new rules has been released by the Ministry of Justice, although not yet published. Amongst the new forms is the Family Mediation Information and Assessment Form FM1, which will have to accompany most private law children applications and most applications for a financial remedy. I notice that one of the reasons on the form why the applicant has not attended a Mediation Information and Assessment meeting is that:
"The applicant (or the applicant’s solicitor) has contacted three mediators within 15 miles of the applicant’s home and none has been able to conduct a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting within 15 working days of the date of contact."

Will we have sufficient mediation coverage in place by the 6th April to meet this?