News Essentials: 16th April 2022

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


Divorce applications up in first week of 'no fault' era
HM Courts & Tribunals Service has received 3,000 divorce applications in the week following the introduction of reforms designed to make the separation process less acrimonious - a 50% rise on the weekly average. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

Treat family separations “as transactions, not litigation”
Family separation cases should “operate in a transactional way, as with conveyancing, rather than under the banner of litigation”, the chair of the Family Solutions Group has argued. Full story: Legal Futures.

Litigation funder can be joined to financial remedy proceedings
A litigation funder owed up to £1m by the wife in what was described by a judge as a “bitterly contested” divorce, can be joined as a party to the financial remedy proceedings, the High Court has ruled. Full story: Legal Futures.

'Apocalypse' now? Judge stunned by £8m divorce costs demands new cap
A High Court judge has called for a cap on costs in family cases after describing the ‘apocalyptic’ state of expensive divorce proceedings. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

Families supported by £33 million to drive down parental conflict
Thousands of families with children are set to benefit from £33 million support to resolve conflict at home and improve children’s life chances. Full story: Department for Work and Pensions.

Ombudsman raps council for using incorrect information to place child on protection plan
Buckinghamshire Council caused significant distress after it shared incorrect information and failed to suitably include a mother in its process when deciding to place her child on a child protection plan, the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman has found. Full story: Local Government Lawyer.

Domestic abuse: separate and single-sex service providers
The Equalities and Human Rights Commission has published a guide on the Equality Act sex and gender reassignment provisions. Full story: Family Law Week.

Supporting male victims of crimes considered violence against women and girls
The Home Office has published a document setting out the government's position on and work to support male victims of crimes considered violence against women and girls. Full story: Family Law Week.

Domestic abuse: CPS revises guidance to ‘challenge damaging myths and stereotypes’
The Crown Prosecution Service has stated that the notion there is a typical victim of domestic abuse is wrong, damaging and can prevent sufferers coming forward. Full story: Family Law Week.

£400,000 financial remedy costs bill 'woefully excessive'
A judge has criticised the ‘woefully excessive’ expenditure on costs by a woman contesting a post-nuptial agreement entered into with her ex-husband. Full story: Law Society Gazette.

Speech: The Bridget Lindley Memorial Lecture 2022
Helen Adam, Chair of the Family Solutions Group, delivered the Bridget Lindley Memorial Lecture 2022 at the Family Justice Council conference. The title of the lecture was: Time for Climate Change in the Family Justice System. Full story: Courts and Tribunals Judiciary.


X (Foreign Surrogacy; Death of Intended Parent), Re [2022] EWFC 34 (04 March 2022)
Applications for a declaration of parentage and a parental order in relation to child born following a surrogacy arrangement in Uganda, where one of the applicants died prior to the hearing. Full report: Bailii.

Re 5 Children (Induced and Exaggerated Illnesses Pattern of Behaviour) [2021] EWHC 3750 (Fam) (10 December 2021)
Judgment in respect of fact-finding in care proceedings concerning 5 children, the principal focus relating to fabricated or induced illness. Full report: Bailii.

DX v JX [2022] EWFC 19 (16 March 2022)
Application by husband to vary and/or terminate a spousal periodical payments order. Full report: Bailii.

Her Majesty's Attorney General v Dowie [2022] EWFC 33 (13 April 2022)
Sentencing judgment in relation to defendant's contempt arising out of his alleged interference with the administration of justice, publishing videos relating to family court proceedings. Full report: Bailii.

Lockwood v Greenbaum [2022] EWHC 845 (Fam) (13 April 2022)
Appeal by wife from refusal of permission to bring an application for financial provision following an overseas divorce. appeal allowed and permission granted. Full report: Bailii.

Somerset County Council v NHS Somerset Clinical Commissioning Group & Ors [2022] EWFC 31 (13 April 2022)
Judgment considering validity of placement/adoption orders, in the light of failures by the LA to comply with the medical elements of the AAR 2005. Full report: Bailii.

P (Children : Disclosure) [2022] EWCA Civ 495 (12 April 2022)
Appeal by father in private law proceedings from dismissal of application for order that any statements made by him would not be disclosed to the police. Appeal dismissed. Full report: Bailii.

LM (A Child) [2022] EWFC 32 (11 April 2022)
Application by LA for care order in respect of 2 year old child, where LA concerned with mother's approach to child's health and general welfare and, in particular, to her extensive involvement with a variety of medical professionals. Full report: Bailii.

Xanthopoulos v Rakshina [2022] EWFC 30 (12 April 2022)
Husband's application for a further legal services payment order; and wife's application to be released from an undertaking that pending determination of the husband's financial claims she would preserve and not deal with, charge or in any way diminish an account with Coutts. Includes detailed discussion of issue of anonymity. Full report: Bailii.

R and S (Children : Welfare Long-Term Foster Care) [2022] EWFC B20 (31 March 2022)
Final welfare judgment in proceedings concerning a girl now aged 11, and a boy now aged 6. Full report: Bailii.

J v H & Ors [2022] EWHC 862 (Fam) (07 April 2022)
Application under the Child Abduction and Custody Act 1985 for an order pursuant to Art. 12 of Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction 1980 directing the summary return of five children, aged between 14 and 7, to Germany. Full report: Bailii.

X v Z (Parental Order Adult) [2022] EWFC 26 (05 April 2022)
Application for a parental order made by applicants in relation to their son, who was born in 1998 following a surrogacy arrangement in the United States. Full report: Bailii.