News Essentials: 18th July 2020

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


Population estimates by marital status and living arrangements, England and Wales: 2019
Annual estimates of population by legal marital status and cohabitation status by age and sex for England and Wales. Full story: Office for National Statistics.

Domestic abuse calls to London police rise by a tenth during lockdown
Increase was mainly due to calls from third parties such as neighbours, says report. Full story: The Guardian.

Busy family court set to close after landlord opts to redevelop
Court bosses plan to close the busiest family court in the south-east region next year after the landlord of the building decided to redevelop the site. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

Lack of secure accommodation sees judge approve plan to lock troubled teenager in council house
A High Court judge has approved a plan which will see a teenager with behavioural difficulties temporarily kept locked in a council house because social services staff cannot find appropriate secure accommodation. Full story: Care Appointments.

Record numbers contact the NSPCC with concerns during lockdown
Children’s charities call for more help from government. Full story: Family Law Week.

Cafcass publishes protocols for seeing children and families and using offices during the Covid-19 pandemic
Cafcass has published two new protocols setting out its approach to returning to in-person work with children and families and using Cafcass offices during the Covid-19 pandemic. Full story: Family Law Week.

Domestic Abuse Bill progresses to House of Lords
Findings of Home Office review of migrant victims of domestic abuse published. Full story: Family Law Week.


Father v Mother [2020] EWHC 1929 (Fam) (03 July 2020)
Father's application, initially for summary return of children to Dubai, and then for direct contact with children, in which the main issue was the degree of risk that the Father would retain them in Dubai if allowed to take them outside England. Full report: Bailii.

Father v Mother [2020] EWHC 1930 (Fam) (17 July 2020)
Application for costs by mother, following hearing of father's application for summary return/contact orders. Full report: Bailii. See also my note, here.

S (Parental Alienation: Cult: Transfer of Primary Care) [2020] EWHC 1940 (Fam) (15 July 2020)
Rehearing of child arrangements application, after successful appeal by father against refusal to transfer care of child to him, following finding that process of alienation had begun in the context of the mother's adherence to a cult. Full report: Bailii. See also my note, here.

M (A Child) [2020] EWCA Civ 922 (17 July 2020)
Appeal by father against order made under inherent jurisdiction that child, who has been living in Algeria for just over 12 years, should be brought to England. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

S (A Child) [2020] EWCA Civ 923 (17 July 2020)
Appeal by mother against order for summary return of child to Poland. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii. For my summary, see this post.

M (A Child) [2020] EWFC 48 (17 July 2020)
Cross-applications in long-running private law proceedings, by mother to vary child arrangements to supervised contact, and by father to enforce existing child arrangements order and for overnight and holiday contact. Full report: Bailii.

NT v LT (Return to Russia) [2020] EWHC 1903 (Fam) (16 July 2020)
Application by mother for summary return of child to Russia. Return ordered. Full report: Bailii.

C (Lay Advocates) (No.2) Secretary State For Justice v A Local Authority & Ors [2020] EWHC 1762 (Fam) (03 July 2020)
Further judgment concerning issue of funding of lay advocates for parents with intellectual impairments which required them to have professional support to understand the court proceedings and to participate effectively in the same. Full report: Bailii.

X (A Child : Fact Finding And Welfare) [2020] EWFC B27 (OJ) (24 February 2020)
Final hearing of care proceedings in relation to child born in 2018, who was injured by one of his parents, the case concentrating on whether the parent who hurt him could be identified, and who should care for him. Full report: Bailii.

WX v YZ & Anor [2020] EWHC 1782 (Fam) (29 June 2020)
Final hearing of mother's application for summary return of 13 year old child to Poland, four years after father wrongfully removed child from her care. Application withdrawn, in light of child's objections to return to Poland. Full report: Bailii.

AG v VD [2020] EWHC 1847 (Fam) (10 July 2020)
Summons by H in financial remedy proceedings, seeking disclosure of the file of W's previous solicitors. Full report: Bailii.