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Stonewall, the lesbian, gay and bisexual charity, has published a draft parliamentary bill for extending the legal form of marriage to gay people. The Bill outlines the legislative steps necessary to give effect to a policy now supported by the main political party leaders.

The Law Commission is to conduct a targeted review of two aspects of the law that entitles married couples and civil partners to claim financial provision from one another on divorce or dissolution of their partnership.

The Government has published its response to the recommendations made by the independent family justice review. The response includes major reforms to the family justice system which ministers says will tackle delays, streamline processes and rebuild trust.

A recent study has revealed what couples think are the most important ingredients for a happy marriage.

The think-tank, Policy Exchange, has called for radical reform of fostering services in England and Wales. A report published by the organisation has shown that in some instances severely disadvantaged children are waiting for over a year for a foster placement and that the life chances for many children in the system are appalling.

New funding to tackle female offending

Posted by on in Domestic Violence

Community projects that tackle female offending have been awarded £3.5m in funding, Justice Minister Crispin Blunt has announced.

Judge overrules postnuptial agreement

Posted by on in Divorce

The High Court has awarded a divorce settlement of £12.5 million to the ex-wife of a wealthy Russian businessman after ruling that the postnuptial agreement in place was unfair, reports the Telegraph.

The number of lone parent families with dependent children in the UK is on the verge of the two million mark for the first time, Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures have revealed.

New data on duration of family law cases

Posted by on in Family Law

The Ministry of Justice has recently published a new set of quarterly court statistics that show the average duration of civil and family cases at every County Court. This will enable the public to see how quickly cases are handled at their local court, and to compare it to other courts across England and Wales.

The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission has recently published research which reveals a greater level of satisfaction for parents who work out their own child maintenance arrangements than for those using the Child Support Agency (CSA) to make arrangements on their behalf.

Justice Minister Jonathan Djanogly is encouraging families to consider mediation in the New Year as an alternative to going to court.

The Government has announced plans to remove the exemption from child maintenance liability that exists for some part-time public servants.

A recent study has provided a detailed statistical analysis of the structure of families in Ireland.

Government consults on domestic violence

Posted by on in Domestic Violence

The Government has launched a consultation on domestic violence, seeking views on whether widening the cross-government definition of domestic violence would provide greater protection and support to victims.

Forced marriage consultation

Posted by on in Family Law

The Government has launched a consultation, seeking views on whether forcing someone to marry should be a criminal offence or whether current arrangements provide adequate protection. It is also interested in views on what more could be done to prevent forced marriage from happening.

Divorce statistics for England and Wales

Posted by on in Divorce

The Office for National Statistics has published annual statistics on divorces that took place in 2010 following court orders in England and Wales.

National charity Family Lives is bracing itself for an increase in calls to its helpline, Parentline, over the Christmas period from families experiencing difficulties.

Detailed proposals for the new statutory child maintenance scheme have been published which include plans to increase the amount of maintenance paid by parents on state benefits and others declaring low incomes.

The Law Reform Committee of the Bar Council, which represents barristers in England and Wales, has held its annual lecture. The Rt. Hon. Sir Nicholas Wall, President of the Family Division and Head of Family Justice for England and Wales, spoke on “Changing the Culture: The role of the Bar and Bench in the management of cases involving children”, calling for changes to the traditional management of cases to be applied by barristers and the judiciary.

Family Lives’ updated aggression report has found that calls to its Parentline regarding aggressive behaviour have increased by 2%, and only 56% of respondents to an online survey had sought help for their child’s problem.