News Essentials: 21st December 2015

A brief summary of the essential family law news and cases from the last two weeks:

Court of Appeal clarifies law on internal relocation
The only principle is that the child’s welfare is paramount. Full story: Family Law Week. See Re C, below.

Examination of experts in family law published by MoJ
A new report from the Ministry of Justice shines a light on how experts are utilised in the family court, and the contributions they make to cases upon appointment and consultation. Full story: Family Law.

Revealed: divorce software error hits thousands of settlements
Exclusive: Ministry of Justice urgently examining extent of Form E fault which miscalculated spouses’ financial worth. Full story: The Guardian.

Mediation starts in the last quarter up by 19%
The Ministry of Justice has published the latest legal aid statistics for July to September 2015. Full story: Family Law.

Support for families going through divorce and separation must improve
Relate report calls for national helpline and single point of access. Full story: Family Law.

Financial remedy applications up 4%
Slight rise noted in this quarter's family court statistics. Full story: Family Law Hub.

Outdated marriage law in need of reform, says Law Commission
‘Law of marriage is out of date, inconsistent and overly restrictive’. Full story: Family Law Week.

Failing children’s services will be taken over
High-performing authorities, experts and charities to be brought in. Full story: Family Law Week.

'Huge rise' in newborn babies subject to care proceedings
There has been a "huge" rise in the number of newborns who are subject to care proceedings in England, according to figures compiled for the first time. Full story: BBC News.

Guidance given on allocation of international surrogacy cases in which parental orders are sought
Russell J hears case involving surrogacy arrangement made in India. Full story: Family Law Week. See Re Z, below.

Private law funding for DNA paternity testing
From 23 November 2015, funding has been re-introduced to cover the cost of paternity testing in private law cases in the family courts that involve children. Full story: Family Law.

Care applications in November 2015
In November 2015, Cafcass received a total of 1,020 care applications.  This figure represents a 15% increase compared to those received in November 2014. Full story: Cafcass.

Cafcass private law demand
In November 2015, Cafcass received a total of 3,462 new private law cases.  This is a 12% increase on November 2014 levels. Full story: Cafcass.

Re C (Internal Relocation) [2015] EWCA Civ 1305 (18 December 2015)
Appeal by father against order permitting mother to move child from London to Cumbria. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii.

E v M [2015] EWCA Civ 1313 (18 December 2015)
Application by father for permission to appeal against child arrangements order providing for him to have only indirect contact with child. Full report: Bailii.

W and F (Children), Re [2015] EWCA Civ 1300 (18 December 2015)
Appeal by a man against findings of abuse made against him in care proceedings. Full report: Bailii.

H (Mother) v C (Father) & Ors [2015] EWCA Civ 1298 (18 December 2015)
Appeal by mother against refusal of permission to take children to live in New York. Full report: Bailii.

NA (Dismissal of Application Under Hague Convention), Re [2015] EWHC 3686 (Fam) (11 December 2015)
Application by a father for an order for the summary return of his son to Belgium, where the state of Belgium would not permit either the child or his mother lawfully to enter Belgium and remain there. Full report: Bailii.

C-W (A Child), Re [2015] EWCA Civ 1272 (11 December 2015)
Appeal by mother against refusal of application for contact with child in Florida. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

Z, Re (Foreign Surrogacy: Allocation of Work : Guidance on Parental Order Reports) [2015] EWFC 90 (16 November 2015)
Applications for parental orders under s 54 of the Human Fertilization and Embryology Act 2008 in respect of twins born to a gestational surrogate in India. Full report: Bailii.

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