divorced

NEW RULES FOR FAMILIES?

The Family Justice Review (“FJR”) was the long awaited report into the running of the family courts.  It came out at the end of November and in February the Government proposed changes to contact arrangements and this caught the headlines.  It is perhaps unfortunate that some of the other less provocative, but very sensible, proposals(…)

WHAT ARE FATHERS’ RIGHTS?

The Family Justice Review (“FJR”) came out at the end of last year, but due to its length it has taken some time for it to be digested and in February the Government proposed new laws to enshrine some of its principles.  This caused some press activity because the recommendation or suggestion that children should(…)

CHILDREN OFF TO UNIVERSITY? IS IT TIME FOR A DIVORCE?

It appears to be an ever increasing trend that people are divorcing later in life.  Many first time divorcees are now over the age of sixty.  When children leave for university or leave home for other reasons is often a trigger for people to re-evaluate their situation.  It is not uncommon for people then to(…)

IS THE DIVORCE PROCESS UNFAIR TO MEN?

I make no apologies for revisiting this issue as it does seem to be a common concern – see the Daily Mail article published on March 10 by Louis de Bernieres.  There is a widespread perception that both with the divorce process and any issue or argument over children if it is conducted through the(…)

LEGAL ISSUES FOR THE OVER SIXTIES

You might imagine that the main concern for the over sixties is either making a Will, if they don’t already have one, considering changes to an existing Will, or thinking about a Lasting Power of Attorney.  Incapacity can be caused for a variety of reasons – Dementia or Alzheimer’s are the obvious causes, but even(…)

LAW COMMISSION ANOUNCES REVIEW OF FINANCIAL PROVISION ON DIVORCE

The Law Commission is about to examine how assets acquired by either party to the marriage prior to that marriage or civil partnership are to be treated, or assets received by gift or inheritance.  To what extent should they be automatically shared. When parties separate the major asset is generally the matrimonial home.  Both parties(…)

MORE CONTACT FOR DADS?

There has been a lot of media response recently to the Family Justice Review looking into the issue of shared parenting and the government’s response to that.  The Family Justice Review chaired by David Norgrove actually stated that they did not feel legislation would be helpful because of their analysis of similar legislation introduced in(…)

SEPARATING AND PERHAPS IT’S ALL GETTING OUT OF CONTROL?

Generally speaking when parties separate one person will have realised that the relationship has broken down a long time before the other.  They will have been thinking about what to do next; maybe they have met somebody else or just decided that the relationship is not going anywhere and they would rather move on to(…)

POST HOLIDAY BLUES? FACEBOOK AND DIVORCE

There has been a lot of talk in the media recently about the effects of the Christmas holidays on families and the resulting surge in divorce figures.  Is this really true?  Are lawyers inundated with new divorce cases in January?  Well, most of my colleagues would agree with me that it is actually a bit(…)

COLLABORATIVE LAW IN ACTION

What does a typical case look like? Let us take a fairly typical example of a couple in business together – the husband is a builder or plumber and his wife is employed by the business doing the books or answering the telephone, in a part time support role as they have young children who(…)

IS DIVORCE RECESSION RELATED?

As many of you may have heard recently the number of divorces in England and Wales has increased for the first time since 2003. Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics indicate that the number of divorces in England and Wales rose by 4.9% in 2010 to 119,589 compared with 113,949 in 2009.  This(…)

MEDIATION

As many of you will know, from 6 April 2011 the Ministry of Justice proposed that before anyone made an application to the court in relevant family proceedings (and this is not divorce – relevant means an application in relation to money matters or children issues), the person making the application should contact a mediator.(…)

EMPLOYERS WILLING TO PAY EMPLOYEES’ LEGAL BILLS!

An interesting report in this week’s Family Law Week states that increasing numbers of businesses are paying some or all of the legal bills incurred by employees separating from their partners.  Companies are helping staff pay for divorce in an attempt to retain key personnel.  It seems that while recession can mean redundancies, it also(…)

WHAT’S NEW IN CHILD MAINTENANCE?

As many of you will know, the Child Support Agency is to be replaced CMEC, the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission and they have now published their proposals for a new statutory child maintenance scheme which, amongst other aspects, includes plans to increase the amount of maintenance paid by parents on state benefits and others(…)

THE MOST POPULAR AGE TO GET DIVORCED?

There were several articles in the press recently about the latest divorce figures suggesting that the only reported rise in the divorce rate is amongst the 60+ age range.  This doesn’t necessarily mean of course that this is the most popular age for divorce, merely that there is a new trend, the numbers of those(…)

WHO CARES FOR THE CHILDREN?

You may have heard the recent decision that legislation is not going to be introduced that gives the perception of a presumed favour of shared parenting when a relationship breaks down.  What does this mean? Whenever parties separate and there are children then a decision has to be made as to whom the children are(…)

WEDDINGS – SOME LEGAL THOUGHTS

From a lawyer’s point of view marriage is not about love – it is a legal transaction.  Whatever the feelings of those involved, getting married affects your legal status.  By getting married you acquire rights to another person’s property and pension that you do not acquire simply by living together.  There is no such person(…)

HOLIDAYS AND DIVORCE

Is it possible to have a happy family holiday post-divorce?  No divorcing person needs to be told how important their children are and no divorcing parent needs to be told how stressful the process can be and how difficult in particular the summer holiday period can be.  There is the practical difficulties of arranging childcare(…)

SEPARATING AND FACEBOOK

There has been a lot of talk in the press recently about why people might reveal aspects of their personal life on Facebook to their detriment.  We have heard tales of students exploits photographed on Facebook that come back to haunt them when they apply for jobs and increasingly married couples are announcing their divorce(…)

DADS AND DIVORCE

Father’s Day is coming up and for some separated or divorced fathers that can be a day full of painful memories of lost or infrequent contact with their children.  There is a perception that the courts are somehow unfair or biased towards mothers, but this really isn’t the case anymore.  Most judges after all are(…)

ALL CHANGE AT THE FAMILY COURTS

From 6th April 2011 everything changed, or was said to have changed, in the family courts.  All the court forms were changed and the major innovation was the introduction of mediation – as though mediation something new!  Everyone contemplating a divorce or separation will have been through some form of mediation, even if they may(…)

IS A GOOD DIVORCE POSSIBLE?

When people separate they are generally going through enormous distress and anxiety, so how can it be in any way good?  There is the point that although the process can be a very painful one, for some people they end up in a better place emotionally.  The relationship, for whatever reason has not worked and(…)