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Australia ends requirement to file exhibits at the family court: should England and Wales follow suit?

A recent change in the rules of the family court in Australia ends the requirement for exhibits both generally and specifically to be filed at the court.  Should England be following suit?  They take up a huge amount of space in the paperwork at the court office.  They are often duplicated in the bundle which is filed the court for any hearing.  Many of them are never looked at again after filing.  This article looks at what could be procedural reform in England.

Consequences of real-time digital family court filing: Respondent dying within hours of the electronic filing

With online divorce being available for use by lawyers in only a matter of weeks, the consequences in practice will be more widely debated than just hitherto by a few of us family law geeks.  I am very grateful to Rob Glade Wright of The Family Law Book of Australia (https://thefamilylawbook.worldsecuresystems.com/) for bringing to my attention a recent decision where the family court procedure rules, as in Engl

Relationship Status and Related Legal Rights

As stated in a recent online article for a national newspaper ‘Statistics show that two thirds of cohabiting couples in England believe that they have automatic rights or the same rights as married couples/couples in a Civil Partnership, simply by virtue of the fact they live together.[1]

Specialisation and the Financial Remedy Court with a Proposed New Form A

In his latest view from the President’s Chambers Sir James Munby sets out his plans, following consultation, for specialised regional Financial Remedy Courts and for a proposed new Form A.

A matter of trust: Should trust assets be considered in divorce cases in England & Wales?

Divorce often brings out the defensive instinct. "It's mine, hands off!" is a common retort amongst parting spouses.

For the most part, it will be obvious that a particular asset belongs to one of the spouses: for example, the family home (in either party's or in joint names) will invariably form part of the family assets which a court may then be asked to divide between the parties.

But in the less public world of trust law, whether the monies held in a trust "belong" to a spouse can be the subject of fierce debate. Divorcing parties may hold entirely different views about how to treat trust funds: one party saying that the trust monies should be poured into the matrimonial pot for division, the other saying that the trust as a separate entity should remain untouched.

Many trusts contain considerable sums of money and so the way in which they are treated by the family courts and divorcing parties can significantly impact the level of resources potentially deemed available for division upon divorce.

Where do divorce proceedings take place for those who have connections to more than one country?

In many instances when a marriage breaks down the spouses only have a connection with one country and the divorce and financial proceedings take place there.  But what happens when one or both people have a connection with more than one country? 

The European Court decision on legality of sharia divorce: what is it really about?

A European Court decision in mid-December 2017 in the context of a Islamic divorce pronounced in Syria was bound to create headlines.  Too often these were potentially misleading when the issue of law was a fairly narrow one and moderately legal technical.  Nevertheless, within that legal technical description covers a wider issue of the interrelationship of personal laws and national laws in the future of family laws across the world.  This article looks at the context and possible futur

The husband, his wife and his sex worker: sharing the marital pot

In the context of the present discussion about reform of cohabitation law, a case decided by the Australian Court of Appeal provides a salutary lesson of problems which can arise.

Unregistered marriages – time to register calls for law reform?

Planning a dream wedding can be hugely stressful at the best of times. At the worst of times, however, the dream can turn to a nightmare for some Muslim women who may later realise that their marriage is not recognised as valid under English law.

I spy a rare white leopard – sharing non-matrimonial assets on divorce

Inspired by a recent Halloween costume party where my colleague Emma Nash and I dressed as that rarest of things, a white leopard, I present here a short guide to how English law treats what is known as “non-matrimonial property” on divorce.

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