Marital agreements: Searching for fairness

Abigail Lowther considers pre-nuptial agreements and the requirement for needs to be met to ensure such an agreement is valid ‘While the husband could be expected to meet his own needs from income, the possible impact on the children of seeing their father as the “poor relation” would create an unhappy and divisive disparity in …
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International focus: Asking the right questions

Suzanne Kingston and Ciara Moore highlight key considerations for pre-nuptial agreements around the world A panel discussion at the International Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL) meeting in Stuttgart regarding international pre-nuptial agreements included brilliant lawyers from around the world, who have helped prepare this article. We considered a number of the key issues of the …
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Surrogacy: Long overdue?

Samantha Little explains the consultation on surrogacy issued by the Law Commissions of England and Wales and Scotland, and the key recommendations ‘The Law Commission proposes a new pathway, if strict requirements are met, that will allow the intended parents to be legal parents from birth through an administrative route rather than a court application.’ …
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Non-court dispute resolution: Another way?

Linda Lamb sets out the process of hybrid mediation and how it can help families in conflict ‘One of the differences between a normal mediation session and the hybrid model is that solicitors are more involved in the meetings and can assist with the preparation of disclosure.’ As family law practitioners we should be encouraging …
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Representing children: Seeking independence

Richard Jones and Laura Coyle examine the approach of the courts to the sufficiency of a child’s understanding where the child seeks to act without a guardian ‘It will ultimately be for the court to decide whether the child has sufficient understanding to conduct the proceedings.’ If you represent children in Children Act 1989 (ChA …
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Child abduction: No place like home

Kayleigh Biswas analyses the circumstances in which a return order may be made despite the left-behind parent’s agreement to a relocation ‘Establishing one of the exceptions to the 1980 Convention opens the door to the court’s exercise of discretion as to whether or not to return a child.’ The judgment in TY v HY [2019] …
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Proprietary estoppel: Broken promises

Amy Harris summarises the key elements of a claim for proprietary estoppel and highlights the significance of the evidence available to the court in such cases ‘The three main elements of a proprietary estoppel claim do not sit in “watertight compartments”, and judicial discretion is key.’ In Guest v Guest [2019], the court was concerned …
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