News Essentials: 25th April 2020

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


Charges and cautions for domestic violence rise by 24% in London
Met police arresting 100 people a day, and say true extent of offending is likely to be more. Full story: The Guardian.

Adoption and Children (Coronavirus) (Amendment) Regulations 2020
Amendments made to assist the children’s social care sector during the coronavirus pandemic. Full story: Family Law Week.

Solicitor spends hours in call queue for update on abuse injunctions
A solicitor spent a total J6urs in one day waiting on the phone to the courts to get an update on two emergency applications for domestic abuse injunctions submitted 24 hours earlier, the Gazette has been told. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

McFarlane: Remote hearing on future of child a step too far
It is not appropriate for a 15-day hearing into whether a mother has harmed her seven-year-old daughter to be held remotely, the president of the Family Court has ruled. Full story: Legal Futures. See report, below.

Coronavirus: Custody fight parents told not to exploit lockdown
Separated couples exploiting the Covid lockdown to stop an ex-partner from seeing their child could face court action, says a senior judge. Full story: BBC News.

Vulnerable groups set to benefit from improved legal aid support
Some of the most vulnerable people in society will be given enhanced support through their legal aid after changes unveiled today (21 April 2020). Full story: Ministry of Justice and Legal Aid Agency.

Victims’ Commissioner and Domestic Abuse Commissioner call for Government to bring empty hotel rooms into use
The Government should act urgently to implement a scheme for suitable hotel rooms to be made available for victims of domestic abuse who need to escape in areas where refuges are full. That is the joint message from Dame Vera Baird QC, the Victims' Commissioner for England and Wales and Nicole Jacobs, the Domestic Abuse Commissioner for England and Wales. Full story: Family Law Week.

Hotels say offer of refuge for domestic abuse victims has been snubbed
Campaigners accuse the government of ‘unnecessary, irresponsible and lethal’ foot-dragging. Full story: The Guardian.


X (Revocations of Testamentary Guardianship) [2020] EWFC 33 (22 April 2020)
Application by prospective adopter to revoke order making him testamentary guardian. Application refused. Full report: Bailii.

Birmingham Children's Trust v K [2020] EWHC 861 (Fam) (25 February 2020)
Application by Children's Trust for permission to appeal against costs order made within private law children proceedings. Permission refused. Full report: Bailii.

MS v RS and BT (Paternity) [2020] EWFC 30 (22 April 2020)
Application for a declaration of non-paternity in respect of two children. Full report: Bailii. And see my summary here.

Berger v Bell [2020] EWCA Civ 544 (11 February 2020)
Appeal against committal order for breach of order relating to sale of property in TOLATA proceedings. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii. See also here for my brief analysis.

S v H [2020] EWFC B16 (9 January 2020)
Final hearing of financial remedy proceedings, in which the husband was bankrupt. Full report: Bailii.

AW v AH & Ors [2020] EWFC 22 (21 April 2020)
Hearing of wife's financial remedy claim, in case in which she argued that a company's holdings belonged in reality to the husband. Full report: Bailii.

P (A Child: Remote Hearing), Re [2020] EWFC 32 (16 April 2020)
Care proceedings involving allegations of fabricated or induced illness. Order that remote final hearing be vacated, as case not suitable for remote hearing. Full report: Bailii.