International Divorce Laws

The European Commission has proposed new rules which would allow married couples from certain European countries to choose which country’s law should apply to their divorce.

Full post: Pannone Family Blog

Media and the Family Courts: Punishing the Innocent and Protecting the Guilty

This is the talk I gave at Staffordshire University’s Annual Family Law Seminar last week, about media and the family courts within the context of Human Rights legislation.

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

Permission Plus

Family Lore has alerted me to this curious decision of Lord Justice Wall on permission (RW v SW [2010] EWCA Civ 457 (29 April 2010)).

Full post: Pink Tape

Just as you thought it was safe to go back in the courtroom…

The snappily titled and easy to read Children Schools and Families Act 2010 has landed on our virtual desks.

Full post: Pink Tape

To the next Government: Please think your policies through

Family Law reports today the disturbing news that an increase in violence against children may be linked to the 2008 rise in court fees for care and supervision orders.

Full post: Family Lore

Allocate this

I’ve been thinking about blame lately. You lose count in this job of the number of people you meet who don’t want to take responsibility for their own actions.

Full post: Pink Tape

Court considers Post-Nuptial Agreement and Husband’s criminal conduct in Ancillary Relief proceedings

In L v K, the Court had to consider an ancillary relief claim from a husband where there had been a Post-Nuptial Agreement and the husband was currently serving a prison sentence.

Full post: Family Law at Lawson West LLP

Family law reform: is it out of this world?

Marilyn Stowe considers that the present agenda for family law reform "fixates upon the caseloads of Central London and the jurisprudential views of the Great and Good, who seem to be able to decide for us all".

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

Morocco. Hague Abduction Convention. Update.

Morocco has acceded to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, effective June 1, 2010. It is the 82nd party to the treaty.

Full post: International Family Law

Cleaning up: one reason why divorce rates are falling…

I have a theory that one reason why divorce rates are falling is because husbands and wives are together taking on both roles, setting aside the traditional approach that certain jobs are allocated by gender.

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

What's mine is mine - could divorce law be changing?

The Law Commission is presently examining whether prenuptial agreements should be legally binding. Its recommendations are due later this year and could result in fresh divorce legislation.

Full post: Pannone Family Blog

“Tug-of-love” ruling resonates in law

A six-year old girl and her two brothers are to be allowed to stay living with their mum in the UK after an Appeal Court ruling took into account where the little girl said she would rather live.

Full post: Family Law Blog

Delaying the Decree Absolute: another look at Miller Smith v Miller Smith

If one party wants the divorce to be finalised but the other does not, and the parties’ finances have not been resolved, may the decree absolute be delayed?

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

Judging families

There seems to be quite a backlash against the Tory pro-marriage policies, in particular their proposed £150 a year tax break for (some) married couples.

Full post: Family Lore

J v J: Warnings for family lawyers in big money cases on trial prep & clients' credibility

The judgment of Mr Justice Charles in the case of J v J (Fam Div) from January 2010 has been published. The judgement is of importance to those specialising in 'big money' financial settlements on divorce not only for its principles of law, but as examined here the guidance given on the preparation cases for trial, and warnings about the presentation of cases in terms of maintaining clients' credibility.

Full post: Pannone Family Blog

Sod the children, this could win votes

I've not commented upon this up until now, but I found it quite appalling (although not at all surprising) that the Government decided that Part 2 of the Children, Schools and Families Bill did not warrant proper consideration and was therefore suitable for the 'wash up' procedure, being rushed through before parliament was dissolved.

Full post: Family Lore

JK Rowling & single mothers: from a family lawyer’s perspective

I believe in families: families of all types, single, married, divorcing, cohabiting. They all deserve consideration and recognition, rather than approbation.

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

Campaigns, criticisms and clerihews

I shall miss The Times' regular shots at the family justice system when it goes pay-to-view in June...

Full post: Family Lore

First Wife v Second Wife: which one gets priority?

The recent case of Vaughan v Vaughan, which involved an elderly divorced couple and made the news while I was away on holiday last week, has led me to wonder. How should a husband divvy up the spoils of a lifetime between his former wife and his current wife?

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog

CMEC v Mitchell: Child support and the Limitation Act

The case involves the ever-ingenious David Burrows, who sought to claim that the Act applied to applications by CMEC under s.39A Child Support Act 1991 for the issue of a warrant committing the liable person to prison or for an order for him to be disqualified from holding or obtaining a driving licence.

Full post: Family Lore

Professional ethics: keeping your head in a difficult situation

"If you always do what is right in your head and always put your loyalty to the firm first, you won’t go wrong." Says Marilyn Stowe.

Full post: Marilyn Stowe Blog


News that the President’s Interim Guidance in Respect of CAFCASS is to be extended by a further six months (to c Oct 2010) fills me with dismay.

Full post: Pink Tape

For the Sake of the Kids

I have now watched the first episode of the new BBC series Who Needs Fathers? Entitled For the Sake of the Kids, the programme follows two couples as they try to resolve arrangements for their children following separation, in contrasting ways.

Full post: Family Lore

Family Law Direct

The Legal Services Board have today lifted the restrictions on barristers accepting instructions directly from members of the public in family work have been lifted.

Full post: Pink Tape

Ex-wife in case of Vaughan wins payout 29 years after separating from her ex

Many newspapers are today reporting the case involving Mr Vaughan QC and his ex-wife.

Full post: Pannone Family Blog