News Essentials 23rd January 2021

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


Government publishes new strategy to protect children from sexual abuse
The Home Secretary has published a new national strategy to protect children from all forms of child sexual abuse. Full story: Family Law Week.

Firms need to check whether they need to register as doing tax advice work
The Law Society has reminded firms, including those practising family law, that they should have checked whether they need to register as doing tax advice work to fulfil their obligations under the money laundering regulations. Full story: Family Law Week.

£3.1 million for support to those representing themselves in court
Funding from a new grant has now been fully awarded to 11 different projects supporting vulnerable people across England and Wales, the Ministry of Justice has announced. Full story: Ministry of Justice.

Landmark hearing to examine handling of domestic abuse cases by UK courts
Family lawyers hope test appeals involving allegations of partner rape and coercive control will help update approach of family courts. Full story: The Guardian.

Family Division judge sets out future lessons for non-notification cases after dismissing application by local authority
A High Court judge has set out lessons for the future in non-notification cases, after refusing to endorse a local authority’s decision not to disclose the existence of a 10-month-old boy to his father. Full story: Local Government Lawyer.

Covid-19: Rise in suspected child abuse cases after lockdown
The number of reported incidents of children dying or being seriously harmed after suspected abuse or neglect rose by a quarter after England's first lockdown last year, figures indicate. Full story: BBC News.

Independent Human Rights Act Review issues call for evidence
The Independent Human Rights Act Review has launched a public Call for Evidence. Full story: Family Law Week.

Workplace support for victims of domestic abuse: review report
The Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy has published a report on improving workplace support for domestic abuse victims, including raising awareness and sharing best practice among employers. Full story: Family Law Week.

Domestic abuse victim not supported properly by Wandsworth council when she became homeless
The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman is highlighting the importance of councils considering the exceptional circumstances of people fleeing domestic abuse when assessing their housing needs, following a complaint about London Borough of Wandsworth. Full story: Family Law Week.


J (A Child) [2020] EWFC 60 (23 December 2020)
Fact-finding hearing in care proceedings concerning 3/4 year old child, in which the LA sought various findings, including that the mother had fabricated various matters relating to the health of the child. Full report: Bailii.
JB (A Child), Re (Sexual Abuse Allegations) [2021] EWCA Civ 46 (22 January 2021)

Care proceedings relating to 17 month old child. Appeal by mother against findings that she sexually abused child's older half-sisters. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

Salford CC v W & Ors (Religion and Declaration of Looked After Status) [2021] EWHC 61 (Fam) (19 January 2021)
Care proceedings, involving application by mother for a prohibited steps order relating to religious upbringing of children. Full report: Bailii.

AZ v FM [2021] EWFC 2 (20 January 2021)
H's appeal against judgment which refused his application to vary periodical payments made for benefit of child of the marriage; capitalised those periodical payments; and dealt with the division of the remainder of a fund previously set aside to satisfy the parties' liability for CGT. Full report: Bailii.

The Prospective Adopters v The Mother & Anor [2021] EWHC 91 (Fam) (20 January 2021)
Application for adoption of a boy of Romanian parents, including application for a declaration that the Local Authority is not required to notify the Romanian Central Authority of the proceedings. Full report: Bailii.

F v M & Ors [2020] EWHC 3532 (Fam) (18 November 2020)
Appeal by father against decision in which the judge declined to order direct contact with the father's three children, in case where the mother was implacably hostile to contact, and had threatened to abduct the children abroad to a non-Hague Convention country. Appeal allowed. Full report: Bailii.

DD (Removal under ICO) [2021] EWCA Civ 36 (18 January 2021)
Appeal against an interim care order made in respect of daughter of the first appellant, on the basis of a care plan under which the child would be removed from the care of the second appellant, the father's new partner. Full report: Bailii.

NHS Trust v X (In the matter of X (A Child) (No 2)) [2021] EWHC 65 (Fam) (18 January 2021)
Judgment considering issue of whether a Gillick competent child should be afforded the exclusive right to decide her own medical care. Full report: Bailii.