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The UK left the EU on the 31 January 2020.  How does this impact on family law, family lawyers and family law clients? 

As one of the world’s leading law firms working with international families, The International Family Law Group LLP has prepared a series of videos and articles for guidance.

We have been actively involved working with the UK government on necessary family law changes on the UK leaving the EU.

In fact there will be no change at all until the end of December 2020, the so-called implementation or transition period.  The existing EU laws will continue and therefore there will be no change in the short term.

But what happens in January 2021 onwards will be fundamental for family lawyers, those involved in family dispute proceedings and all concerned with family justice here and abroad, within and outside the EU.

iFLG has also relaunched its free Brexit family law helpline to provide information for family lawyers here and abroad and those involved in family court proceedings about the impact of Brexit on family law.  Please telephone +44 (0) 203 178 5668.

Please see below for the good practice guidance, January 2019 and March 2019, to the family law profession by the Law Society and resolution, of which iFLG partner, David Hodson OBE was a primary author.

Welcome back to our much loved Sole Domicile

One of the features of the new family law landscape on the UK leaving the EU is the re-emergence of sole domicile, a jurisdictional connecting feature in English law over many decades.  It is now a primary basis for divorce as it was until the end of February 2001 when Brussels II first arrived.  It is no longer a restriction on the family courts’ power to make needs-based orders.  UK domiciliaries again have access to the family courts of England and Wales.  What is there not to rejoice and

UK/EU Christmas Eve deal: what's in it about family law?

On Christmas Eve, with seven days to go before the UK fully left the EU, the Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, announced that a deal had been concluded with the EU.  The full document incorporating the terms was published on Boxing Day morning. 
It consists of about 400 pages of text along with about 850 pages of Annexes, the titles of which indicate strongly there would be no family law aspects.  What within the text is relevant for family law and family lawyers? 

The impact of Brexit on divorce and financial proceedings in England and Wales

By Stuart Clark and Michael Allum

Christmas Opening Hours

The International Family Law Group LLP would like to wish our clients, contacts and friends across the globe a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year.

Our opening hours over the festive period are as follows:

Brexit and Family Law: UK Departure but European Problems

English and French specialist family lawyers David Hodson and James Netto of The International Family Law Group, plus guest speaker Delphine Eskenazi of Libra Avocats (France) examined some of the family law problems which will arise in practice from January 2021 onwards on the UK leaving the EU in a virtual conference held on 26 November 2020.

The conference covered:

Online filing is real-time on New Year's Eve: practice direction change to accommodate EU withdrawal arrangements

I have just heard this morning that there will be an amendment to the relevant practice directions to provide that online applications received on New Year’s Eve after 4:30 PM and before 11:00 PM will count as receipt on that date and not as the next day on which the court opens as is presently  the position.  I have only heard a brief summary of the intended change and not the detail and this note will be updated.  But this is brilliant news and demonstrates appropriate responsiveness, aware

EU Laws continue until at least 2038 and beyond

The UK left the EU on 31 January 2020.  But in matters of law it fully leaves on 31 December 2020.  But EU laws will continue to apply, and be applied, in the English family courts from 1 January 2021 onwards, probably until 2038 and perhaps beyond. 
This fact is not much known, has not been widely publicised but is very relevant for those who wish to continue to rely on EU laws in their family affairs.  

EU Case Law: iFLG stands up for Access to Justice

In February 2020, the UK government said it would be leaving EU laws on final departure from the EU on 31 December 2020.  But what should be the status of existing case law from the European Court (CJEU)? 
Specifically, which level of courts should be able to depart from it?  There was a consultation over the summer.

Family Law Leaves the EU: A summary guide for practitioners - published today

This new book published today, explains Family Law in leaving the EU. Every practitioner should have a copy.

'Family law leaves the EU: A summary guide for practitioners'

This is a new textbook published today, 20 October 2020, by LEXIS-NEXIS and written by one of the world’s leading family lawyers, Prof David Hodson OBE MCI Arb. 

Family law leaves the EU: Still relying on EU laws after all those years

David Hodson OBE MCIArb in his third article on family law leaving the EU looks at transitional arrangements.  It will be possible to rely on EU laws for very many years to come but take action before 31 December 2020.!