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08/02/2018
David Gauke, justice secretary has agreed to examine the case for reforming divorce laws that force couples into damaging and false allegations of blame.

Further momentum was given to Family Matters, the campaign which was launched by The Times and the Marriage Foundation charity.  The move by David Gauke comes after senior judicial figures called for an end to the “unjust” and “outdated” laws.

“Mr Gauke said: “I know The Times has campaigned vigorously for reform of family law, including fault-based divorce, and a number of respected figures have voiced their support for ch...[CONT]

06/02/2018
FAMILY LAW MYTH 3 - Pre-Nuptial Agreements – Worthless or Worth It?

In the latest of the ‘Family Law Myths’ series, this article aims to shed light on the legal landscape as it relates to Pre-Nuptial Agreements.

It is a common misconception that a Pre-Nuptial Agreement is:

-        “Not worth the paper it is written on.”

-        “Expensive, and a waste of money.”

-        "...[CONT]

22/01/2018
FAMILY MEDIATION WEEK – ARE YOU AWARE OF THE OPTIONS IN SORTING OUT FINANCES ON DIVORCE?

Kate Stovold looks at alternative ways of settling finances without going to court

Family Mediation Week takes place this week (22 – 26 January 2018) and aims to raise awareness of Mediation and how it can help separating families manage their issues collaboratively and productively.

But what is Mediation?

When couples get divorced, they are best advised to agree a...[CONT]

15/01/2018
PROPERTY OWNERSHIP ON DIVORCE OR SEPARATION

Kate Stovold looks at why it is important to understand how property is owned in this country, especially if you own jointly and then separate or divorce.

Last year, the former wife of an oil and gas trader was awarded £453million in one of the largest divorce settlements ever ordered by a UK Court. Whilst the couple in the case was not identified, their extravagant lifestyle...[CONT]

27/11/2017
Call for Family Law reform – Top judges back Family Matters campaign

Family Matters, the campaign which was launched a week ago by The Times and the Marriage Foundation charity, has gained further momentum as Britain’s most senior judge lends her support. Baroness Hale of Richmond, the president of the Supreme Court, is backing the campaign for the law to be changed to end fault-based divor...[CONT]

16/11/2017
Family Law Myth 2 – Let’s be clear - Cohabiting couples do not have same rights as married couples

When you hear something enough times, it is difficult to believe it is not true.

This is what has happened with the term “common law wife”. To be gender equal we should of course be saying “common law spouse” but in this case it is almost always the female of the species who is duped by terminology that trips off the tongue, and believes that after a certain amount of time of cohabitation (7 years is often the mystical number) you can be termed a “commo...[CONT]

30/10/2017
Myths Update – Report by Nuffield Foundation backs calls for reform to remove “fault”

In a previous legal update post, Family Law Myth 1 – The “no fault” divorce we explored the “myths” around the current, yet anachronistic, triggers to initiate a divorce which had been highlight by the Owens v Owens case.

Published today is Finding Fault, the report of an empirical study, funded by the Nuffield Foundation, and the first full-scale...[CONT]

09/08/2017
Birch v Birch [2017] UKSC 53 – The Supreme Court allows wife’s appeal to vary undertakings contained in a consent order

Case comment by Ella Welsby

26 July 2017 - The Supreme Court, by a majority of 4:1, has allowed the wife’s appeal to apply to be released from undertakings given to her husband as part of a consent order approved by the court on 26 July 2010.

The 2010 order included undertakings whereby the wife promised to use her best endeavours to discharge the husband’s liability under the mortgage on the former matrimonial home ‘FMH’ or in the event that she wa...[CONT]

19/06/2017
Sharp v Sharp: short marriage shakes 50/50 principle

The Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of City trader Julie Sharp, reducing the £2.74m award made to her husband Robin Sharp in 2015 to £2m.   This is a significant “sea change” in terms of matrimonial law in that it challenges the principle, established in White v White [2001] 1 AC 596  that the matrimonial assets of a divorcing couple should normally be shared between them on an equal basis.  Shaking what was widely regarded as a ri...[CONT]

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