Latest News

Divorce rate has reached a record low since 1973

It is commonly reported that divorce is on the increase and couples are separating at the drop of a hat.  It is therefore of great surprise to note that in fact the divorce rate in England and Wales has reached a record low since 1973.  The ONS...

The Silent Victims

The number of men in England and Wales reporting domestic violence to the police has doubled in the five years to 2017.  Despite the fact that one-third of all victims of domestic violence are male (almost 150,000 in 2017), less than 1% of the beds...

Civil Partnership for Straight Couples

  The Prime Minister, Theresa May has announced today that straight couples are to be extended the same rights as gay couples to enter into a civil partnership.  Gay and straight couples should have the right to make the same choices in life says...

What is Pension Sharing in Divorce?

Pension sharing is once again in the news because according to Age UK, thousands of divorced women in the UK are worse off in retirement because they didn’t factor into their financial settlement the pension fund of their husband. A pension fund can...

What is Parental Alienation and why is it in the news?

Parental Alienation is when one parent negatively influences a child or children against the other parent.  It is a behaviour that is being increasingly recognised by Courts in cases involving children where parents are in dispute over arrangements for...

What is a no fault based divorce?

Divorce is once again the news because last week the Justice Secretary David Gauke revealed that the Government is planning a consultation paper on the introduction of the no fault based divorce. This is likely to be in response to the refusal of the Supreme...

Children at Risk

Statistics recently released from the Children’s Commissioner for England reveals that over 2 million children in England are growing up in families where there are serious risks.  This includes: 890,000 children with parents suffering serious...

Family Solicitors per Residents

Recent research has shown that in London there is only one qualified family Solicitor per every 2,714 residents. Research undertaken by mylegaladviser shows that due to a shortage of Solicitors Londoners may be forced to travel miles from home to get legal...

FIVE COURT JUSTICES HAVE RULED THAT THE CIVIL PARTNERSHIP ACT 2004 IS INCOMPATIBLE WITH THE EUROPEAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS

Five Court justices have ruled that the Civil Partnership Act 2004 is incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights as only same sex couples can enter into a Civil Partnership and this, therefore, amounted to discrimination against heterosexual...

Financial Remedy Court

The President of the Family Division has put forward proposals to introduce a Court purely to deal with financial remedy matters, a Financial Remedy Court (FRC). He reported his 'core ambition for financial remedy work is to improve significantly both...

Sharia Law

Sharia Law Sharia Law is the religious law forming part of the Islamic tradition. An independent review into the application of Sharia law in England and Wales has been undertaken. The review makes recommendations, which include a legal requirement to...

CAFCASS

The Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service has a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare of children going through the family justice system. They provide experienced Family Court Advisers who are often asked by the court to work with...

Parenting Plans

Parenting plans are an extremely useful tool when parents separate. These are drawn up by parents and helps them to focus their minds on all aspects of a child’s life once they separate. A parenting plan can help regulate arrangements for a child...

Civil Partnership

On 2 February 2018 the Civil Partnerships, Marriages and Deaths (Registration Etc.) Bill received an unopposed second reading. The Bill makes proposals for heterosexual couples to enter in to Civil Partnerships. Currently Civil Partnership is available to...

Equality

A Russian billionaire has taken steps to appeal a judgment that his wife is awarded 41% of the matrimonial assets worth £1bn. This was a long marriage of 20 years, meaning the starting point for a settlement is the equal sharing of assets. Despite the...

Is my marriage over?

Marriage no longer has the permanence of years gone by and statistically there has been a rise in the number of couples divorcing  at a time when there has been a reported drop in the number of loved up couples choosing marriage over living together. ...

Changes to Evidence Requirements came into effect 8 January 2018

We have previously written articles about the tough criteria that must be met in Order to secure Legal Aid in Family Law related matters. It was explained that in order to obtain legal aid, it is necessary to be of low financial means in addition to having...

Marion Foley Introduction

HELLO BLOG READERS!!! As the newest recruit to Townsend Family Law, I thought I would use my first blog to tell you a bit about myself.   I have been a specialist family solicitor for over twenty years and for 12 years I was a solicitor and...

Stellar Contribution

Stellar contribution In determining how assets should be divided upon divorce both parties will often present arguments as to why a Court should depart from the sharing principle. One such argument is contribution based. To convince a Court to depart from...

Settlement Conferences

Some designated Family Judge (DFJ) areas are piloting settlement conferences. A settlement conference involves a Judge from the family court taking on role of inquisitor in order to assist parties to cooperate with a view to reaching agreement in relation to...

McKenzie Friend

The recent Case of Re H (Children: exclusion of Mckenzie Friend) 2017 EWFCB31 saw a mother appeal against the decision by a District Judge that she would not be permitted to use her ongoing Mckenzie Friend in proceedings. In Family Proceedings it is common...

Enquiry into Child Maintenance Service

Enquiry into child maintenance An enquiry into the Child Maintenance Service was published today by the Work and Pensions Community Child Maintenance Service. The Child Maintenance Service was launched in July 2016 and replaced the old Child Support...

Impact of Divorce on Children

It is not surprising that when two parties decide to separate it has an impact on the children.  A recent study has shown that in fact a child’s physical health can be affected by their parents’ divorce.  This is perhaps not surprising...

Dispute Resolution, Mediation, Arbitration

Dispute Resolution At Townsend Family Law we aim to resolve matters without the need to attend court. Whilst it is recognised that making an application to court is often necessary. We endeavour to resolve disputes in relation to financial matters and...

Downward Trend for Heterosexual Marriage

Data recently published by the office of national statistics has shown a downward trend for heterosexual marriages despite a rise in 2014. The number of heterosexual marriages that have taken place this year are less than the number of marriages in 2011,...