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Conduct: Changing the blame game?

Rachel Freeman examines the impact of conduct within financial remedy proceedings and how revised costs provisions have added to the pressure to negotiate reasonably That a spouse’s bad behaviour will be disregarded in the financial settlement is already a bitter pill for some clients to swallow, yet now they are under more pressure to come …
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Adult children: No way through

Hannah Viet considers an unusual case involving a claim by an adult child against his parents and the extensive arguments submitted in support of that claim There is no jurisdiction for a child to bring a claim for financial relief against a party to a subsisting marriage. In FS v RS [2020], Sir James Munby …
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Recusal: All above board

Anna-Laura Lock and Selena Arbe-Barnes look at the cab rank rule and when the court may be permitted to prevent counsel from accepting instructions It is not necessary to demonstrate that actual unfairness will result from counsel’s participation in proceedings; in view of the maxim that justice must not only be done, but be seen …
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International children: A perfect storm?

Holly Crook analyses the impact of Brexit and Covid-19 on child abduction cases, both now and in the future On a closer look and examination of Brussels IIA, it becomes clear that there are subtle but significant losses of protection for parents against international child abduction. Ever-changing restrictions and guidelines resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic …
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Public children: Not a foregone conclusion

Natasha Kirk and James Sandiford ask when care proceedings should be withdrawn and highlight that the answer may not be obvious and caution must be taken The guardian’s grounds of appeal centred on criticism of the judge’s decision to determine the issue of threshold summarily, without hearing and testing the evidence of lay parties and …
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Private children: Theory versus reality

Matt Foster says that the enforcement of child arrangements orders requires a pragmatic approach outside the legislative framework Many hurdles need to be cleared before the court is able to make an enforcement order and it is likely to take a significant amount of time (and money) to get to that stage. Unfortunately, most practitioners …
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Human rights: Flesh and blood

Andrew Powell and Linzi Bull examine the weight to be given to sibling relationships in public law proceedings The Supreme Court noted there was a clear distinction between the rights of those family members, such as parents, who are directly involved with the upbringing of the subject child, and siblings who do not play a …
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Non-court dispute resolution: Cutting the Gordian Knot

Claire Yorke suggests that a hybrid approach to resolving financial issues on divorce or dissolution may provide a solution even in more complex cases Where the parties are not able to reach a solution through non-court dispute resolution alone (as would always be preferable), one may draw on the advantages of both court proceedings and …
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Variation: Reduced circumstances

Kathryn Cassells considers how the courts may approach an application to vary a lump sum order where the applicant’s disclosure is unclear and their financial woes are of their own making While both quantum and the timing of payments is variable, case law suggests that the court will only vary quantum in exceptional circumstances, not …
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Scotland: Tips and traps

In the conclusion to a two-part analysis, Fiona Turner and Noel Ferry analyse key differences as to financial provision in Scotland when compared with England and Wales In Scotland, if the value of an asset has crashed post-separation, this is irrelevant when establishing the extent of matrimonial property which should be shared, as will be …
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