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Family Law Blog

Can I take my child on holiday if the other parent does not consent?

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Now that the national lockdown has lifted and the possibility of international travel is an increasingly more viable option, many will be looking to get away and go abroad for some proper summer sun. Issues often arise when parents are separated and one...

Do I need a Consent Order?

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We are often asked if a Consent Order is needed in divorce proceedings the answer is yes, it is advisable and recommended.  A Consent Order is a document that is entered into willingly by both parties and it records the financial terms agreed...

What can I do if my spouse doesn't respond to my divorce papers?

Laura Cotton
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When the Petitioner makes an application for a divorce, the spouse, known as the Respondent, is sent a copy of the application along with a form to complete called an Acknowledgement of Service (AOS). They are required to complete the AOS, which acknowledges...

Covid-19: What if parents cannot agree on vaccinating their child?

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The decision as to whether to order the vaccination of a child has been an issue for the Courts for many years before the existence of the Covid-19 virus. Now that the roll-out of the vaccines for the virus have been a success in respect of adults, the...

What is a Section 7 Report?

Laura Cotton
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A Section 7 report is a report prepared by CAFCASS or a social worker from the Local Authority (Social Services) in cases where an application has been made to the Court under Section 8 of The Children Act 1989. A Section 7 report may be required in cases...

How do I complete a Form E?

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When you are going through a separation, your first thought might be to start divorce proceedings, but it is important to try and reach an agreement in relation to the finances at the same time. This can take some time as there are many things you will need...

What can I expect if I apply for a Child Arrangements Order?

Laura Cotton
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It is common that when a relationship breaks down, conversations need to be had about the arrangements for the children to be able to spend time with both parents. It is always best if parents can reach an agreement between themselves in an attempt to ensure...

Special Guardianship - An Agenda for Change

Julia Shaikh
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In August and November 2019, I wrote articles considering whether Special Guardianship Orders required reform. The case of Re P-S (Children) [2018] EWCA Civ 1407  spurred the need for change. Developments continue within this area of law....

Is it normal to exchange financial disclosure to reach a financial settlement in divorce?

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Trying to agree a financial settlement during a divorce can be an intimidating and daunting prospect. In order to ensure a fair and reasonable settlement, we always advise clients of the need to exchange full and frank financial disclosure, whether in...

My relationship has ended: what happens to the house?

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According to the Office for National Statistics, there are over 6m people cohabiting without being married or in civil partnerships, However, unlike spouses and civil partners, cohabitees have no automatic right to make a financial claim against their former...

What is the role of mediation in family law matters?

Laura Cotton
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When a relationship breaks down, many issues can need resolving such as finances, divorce proceedings and often child arrangements. Sometimes it can be difficult to resolve these issues with your former partner and conversations may become heated. Roughly...

Separation - What are your options?

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Deciding to separate or divorce is one of the hardest decisions to make, but the process itself does not have to be difficult. Once you have decided to separate the first step should be finding the right solicitor for you and for the outcome you are aiming...

Does lockdown affect whether I can spend time with my children?

Laura Cotton
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As England is placed into another national lockdown, many parents will have concerns about what impact this has on Child Arrangements. The government have released national lockdown guidance which includes direction for child arrangement matters. The...

Domestic Abuse - Am I eligible for Legal Aid?

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Legal Aid is the provision of financial assistance to people who are unable to afford legal representation and access to the court system. Legal Aid is payment from public funds, and only provided in cases of need. If you have been the victim of domestic...

Declarations of Trust: what they are and when you should use one

Laura  Anderson
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If a property is in joint names, and the owners aren’t married/civil partners, the presumption upon sale is that each person will get an equal share of the net sale proceeds. If each individual owner contributed equally to the deposit and the mortgage,...

What can I do if my ex-partner is stopping me from seeing my child?

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Many parents experience problems securing contact with their children following the breakdown of a relationship.  Are you one of them?  If so, this article may help. In accordance with the Children Act 1989, as long as it is safe, children are...

Remote Hearings in the Family Justice System: A review of the Rapid Consultation by the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory.

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It goes without saying that the Covid-19 pandemic has had a significant impact in virtually every aspect of our lives.  Arguably, one of the most significant changes for us at Johnson Astills, and for our clients, is that court hearings for Family and...

What is No-Fault Divorce?

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From autumn 2021, it will become much simpler for couples to get a divorce or civil partnership dissolution. Couples will no longer have to prove ‘reasons’ or ‘facts’ for the separation, ending the ‘blame game’ that...

What do the Court consider when making a financial order?

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When the Court decide how to distribute assets following the breakdown of a marriage, they have to consider the checklist contained within Section 25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. The main principle is that the settlement must be fair and reasonable...

"Divorcing? Think of the children..."

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Recent research reported in the press has revealed that divorced parents are often in denial with regard to the impact of the breakdown of the relationship upon their children. Three quarters of parents surveyed thought that their children had ‘coped...