News Essentials: 13th June 2020

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


Government to review support in the workplace for survivors of domestic abuse
Business Minister Paul Scully launches review of employment rights for survivors of domestic abuse. Full story: GOV.UK.

Victims of domestic and sexual abuse given free access to support websites on smartphones
Victims of domestic and sexual abuse are being granted free access to support websites on smartphones during the coronavirus pandemic. Full story: Care Appointments.

Domestic Abuse Bill 2020: letter from ministers to Jess Phillips MP
Correspondence from Victoria Atkins MP and Alex Chalk MP, to Jess Phillips MP following the second reading of the Domestic Abuse Bill 2020. The letter thanks members for their contributions and sets out the government’s position on some of the issues raised ahead of committee stage. Full story: GOV.UK.

Care case proceeds despite mother’s QC shielding at home
A fact-finding hearing in care proceedings can continue even with the mother’s QC not being physically present, the Court of Appeal has ruled. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

MPs call for register to monitor serial domestic abusers and stalkers
Cross-party group submits proposed amendment to bill passing through parliament. Full story: The Guardian.

The Family Court and COVID-19: The Road Ahead
Sir Andrew McFarlane, President of the Family Division, has today published ‘The Road Ahead’ for the Family Court in England and Wales. Full story: Courts and Tribunals Judiciary.

Legal aid: Woman in abuse case challenges rules
A woman is challenging rules which deprived her of legal aid for action to protect her from her former partner. Full story: BBC News.

'No-fault' divorce bill backed by MPs
A bill introducing "no-fault" divorces in England and Wales has been backed by MPs. Full story: BBC News.

Over 100 frontline domestic abuse charities given government funding
Over 1,500 refuge spaces will be provided to support survivors of domestic abuse at risk during the pandemic. The provision will be backed by £8.1 million of government funding which will also support other specialist services, such as counselling. Full story: Family Law Week.


Lancashire County Council v M & Ors (COVID-19 Adjournment Application) (Rev 1) [2020] EWFC 43 (12 June 2020)
Care proceedings. Application by father to adjourn part-heard fact finding hearing so that it can take place face-to-face in his local court. Application refused. Full report: Bailii.

Akhmedova v Akhmedov & Ors [2020] EWHC 1526 (Fam) (12 June 2020)
Further judgment in financial remedy proceedings, dealing with W's litigation funding; applications for a reporting restriction order and an order prohibiting disclosure to third parties; and applications relating to disclosure generally. Full report: Bailii.

N (A Child) [2019] EWCA Civ 1997 (19 November 2019)
Appeal against refusal to order rehearing of fact-finding in care proceedings, raising issue of ensuring that a vulnerable parent is able to give their best evidence. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

CS v FB [2020] EWHC 1474 (Fam) (20 May 2020)
Application by father for return of child to Brazil. Judgment dealing with issue of capacity of mother to litigate. Interim declaration of lack of capacity made. Full report: Bailii.

MC v Secretary of State for Work and Pensions and TM (CSM) (error on a point of law) [2020] UKUT 157 (AAC) (12 May 2020)
Appeal by PWC against CMS assessment of NRP's income. Appeal allowed, as FTT did not deal properly with issue of admissibility of documentation from parallel family court proceedings; and did not adequately investigate question of possible application of a variation based on an alleged diversion of income by NRP. Full report: Bailii.

RH v SV (Pension Apportionment: Reasons) [2020] EWFC B23 (09 March 2020)
Appeal by wife against amount of pension share. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii.

KM v CV (Pension Apportionment: Needs) [2020] EWFC B22 (25 February 2020)
Appeal by husband against failure to make pension sharing order. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

C (Children : Covid-19: Representation) [2020] EWCA Civ 734 (10 June 2020)
Appeal by mother against decision to fix fact-finding hearing in care proceedings on a date when her leading counsel could not attend in person because she is required to shield from the Covid-19 infection. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii.

G v D (Art 13b: Absence of Protective Measures) [2020] EWHC 1476 (Fam) (08 June 2020)
Application by father for summary return of children, who are subject to care proceedings, to Belgium. Application dismissed, as mother's Art 13(b) defence made out. Full report: Bailii.

ZN v GN [2020] EWHC 1316 (Fam) (01 May 2020)
Final hearing of financial remedies claim, in which the primary issue was the husband's concern that he did not want to feel disadvantaged in what he could offer the children by way of lifestyle when they were with him when compared with their lifestyle with their mother. Full report: Bailii.