News Update: 5th of November 2013
WELCOME to this week's Family Lore News Update.
Scot Young and the $4.5 billion Post-It note: Court hears of bankrupt tycoon's Facebook 'profit' in high-profile divorce case
A hand-written note seized from the home of the bankrupt tycoon at the centre of Britain’s most high-profile divorce suggested he made “$4.5 billion profit” in Facebook, the High Court heard on Monday. The saga continues... Full story: The Independent.
Not reporting child abuse 'should be criminal offence'
Failing to report allegations of child abuse should be made a criminal offence, according to the former director of public prosecutions. Full story: BBC News.
Pre-care proceedings protocol deserves urgent consideration
Bridget Lindley, Deputy Chief Executive and Principal Legal Adviser of the Family Rights Group, has called for urgent consideration to be given to the publication of a pre-proceedings protocol in conjunction with the revised Public Law Outline. Full story: Family Law Week.
Separating couples are rejecting mediation
The number of separated couples undergoing publicly-funded mediation has dropped by almost a third, compared to the same period last year, since the removal of legal aid from divorce lawyers in April 2013. Full story: Family Law Week.
Young domestic abusers need better support, say experts
A new approach is needed to stop teens committing domestic violence, according to a group of experts. Full story: BBC Newsbeat.
Missing girl's family jailed for not revealing her location
The grandparents and aunt of a five-year-old girl at the centre of a custody battle have been sentenced to 12 days jail for contempt of court. The Re Davies case - see below. Full story: BBC News.
Businessman's estranged wife will 'settle for £300m' in epic divorce battle
Michelle Young claims her former partner owns assets worth a few billion, but Scot Young has told judges he is bankrupt. Full story: The Guardian.
Two more Hague Convention appeals to be heard by the Supreme Court
Appeals from LC (Children)  EWCA Civ 1058 and DL v EL  EWCA Civ 865 to be heard in November. Full story: Family Law Week.
Number of cohabiting families continues to rise
There are now 2.9 million families in the UK where opposite sex couples are unmarried, according to the latest Families and Households Bulletin published by the ONS. Full story: Family Law Hub.
New evidence requirements prevent half of domestic violence victims from accessing legal aid entitlement
The Association of Lawyers for Children has reported the results of research which confirms initial fears that many domestic violence victims would not meet the new evidence criteria introduced by LASPO and accompanying regulations. Full story: Family Law.
Italian couples accused of divorce ‘fraud’ in UK
Hundreds of Italian couples face having their divorces overturned after being accused of running a scam to obtain a quick marriage splits through the British courts. Full story: The Telegraph.
The courts are secular, says top family judge
The law has a neutral view of religious belief, the president of the Family Division said today, stressing the secular nature of the judges’ job. Full story: Law Society Gazette. See below under Articles for the speech.
New cross-government support strategy for care leavers
The government launches its strategy to support young people leaving care. Full story: Department for Education.
MoJ consults on legal aid remuneration in advance of Single Family Court
The Ministry of Justice is consulting on legal aid remuneration as it prepares for the Single Family Court, which swings into operation in April next year. Full story: Family Law Hub.
Re E (Adoption Order: Proportionality of Outcome to Circumstances)  EWCA (29 October 2013)
Appeal by mother against care and placement orders. Appeal allowed. Placement order set aside and care order replaced with an interim care order. Report: Family Law.
A Local Authority v X & Anor (Children)  EWHC 3274 (Fam) (22 October 2013)
Care proceedings. Application by local authority for a declaration of non-recognition of the marriage of the mother.Application refused. Full report: Bailii.
London Borough of Barnet v M1 (aka M2)  EWCC 5 (Fam) (08 March 2012)
Application for care and placement orders where the mother claimed a different identity and that therefore she was not subject to the proceedings. Care order made. Full report: Bailii. See also the blog post, below.
Davies, Re  EWHC 3294 (Fam) (25 October 2013)
Mother apparently removed child from jurisdiction without consent. Contempt proceedings in respect of three members of mother's family who refused to divulge her whereabouts after location order made. Full report: Bailii. See also the blog post, below.
Pakhomova v Russia (Application no 22935/11) (24 October 2013)
Russian authorities held to be in breach of Art 8 for failing to take, without undue delay, all the measures that they could reasonably have been expected to take to enforce a custody judgment. Report: Family Law. Full report: ECHR. See also my post on the Marilyn Stowe Blog, here.
Berger v Berger  EWCA Civ 1305 (29 October 2013)
The appellant's husband had died in 2005 and probate was granted in 2006. This was an appeal against the refusal to give permission for the appellant to make an application for an order under section 2 of the Inheritance (Provision for Family and Dependants) Act 1975 where the appellant contended that the disposition effected by the deceased’s will shortly before he died was not such as to make reasonable financial provision for her. Full report: Family Law Hub.
Samantha Bangham’s Week in Cases 1 November 2013
Samantha Bangham looks at the week's case highlights. Full article: Family Law.
Therapeutic Provision for Parents in Care Proceedings – who should be footing the bill?
Matthew Burman, barrister of St Albans Chambers explores the respective legal duties of the NHS and local authorities in securing the provision of psychotherapy for parents in care proceedings. Full article: Family Law Week.
Law, morality and religion in the family courts
Keynote address given by Sir James Munby, President of the Family Division at the Law Society’s Family Law Annual Conference ‘The sacred and the secular: religion, culture and the family courts’. Full article: Judiciary of England and Wales (PDF). see also the news story above.
Null and void (or not)
A Local Authority v X and Another 2013. This was a set of care proceedings, within which the Local Authority applied under the Inherent Jurisdiction for a declaration that the marriage the child had entered into should not be recognised in English law. Full post: suesspiciousminds.
The B-S hall of fame
"What follows is a short summary of the main principles from Re B & the subsequent cases including B-S on the court's approach to performing the balancing exercise in evaluating care plans involving placement away from the family." Full post: Family Law Week blog.
It ain’t me babe, it ain’t me you’re looking for
The perplexing circumstances of London Borough of Barnet and M1 (aka M2) 2013 [above]. Full post: suesspiciousminds.
The Supreme Court ~ J (Children)  UKSC 9 and Re B (A Child)  UKSC 33
A difficult area of family law is that relating to Public Law proceedings where the courts are empowered to make orders which could have the result that a child is removed from the natural family. Various recent cases demonstrate all too well some of the profound difficulties involved. Full post: Law and Lawyers.
Re Davies: Family found in contempt for failure to comply with location order
A look at the case Re Davies  EWHC 3294 (Fam) [above]. Full post: Family Lore. Now, if I was suesspiciousminds I would have come up with a Kinks pun for that case name. 'You really got me' perhaps? Or perhaps not...