Welcome to the Family Lore Focus Newsletter. Here is a summary of the last week in family law, including the top news stories, reported cases, articles and blog posts:


Britain’s top divorce judge uses his own courts to ban his wife from discussing their divorce

One of the most senior family judges in England and Wales claims to have obtained an order to stop his wife speaking publicly about their marriage break-up.

Foster carers at risk under government welfare reforms

The Fostering Network has launched a new campaign to ensure foster carers are not worse off under government’s plans for welfare reform and the introduction of the new Universal Credit in 2013.

£1 billion child maintenance arranged or collected by the CSA in the last year

More than 1,000 parents receive suspended prison sentences for non-payment of child maintenance.

Families Need Fathers’ telephone helpline logs a record number of calls in 2010/11

The Families Need Fathers evening telephone helpline answered 4,125 calls in the year from June 2010 to May 2011.

Adoptions fall to record low

The number of children being adopted in England and Wales has fallen to its lowest level on record, according to official figures.

Children’s commissioner critical of family justice review

Local authorities would not be able to employ independent reviewing officers if judges were to stop scrutinising care plans for children and young people, according to the children’s commissioner.

MoJ concession on immigration domestic violence cases

Lawyers have welcomed the justice minister’s concession to put some immigration domestic violence cases back within the scope of legal aid.

Ofsted proposes two-week long, unannounced inspections

Ofsted inspections of local authority children’s services could in future consist of a two-week, on-site, unannounced visit that will include direct observation of interactions with children and families.

Twin baby swap parents found guilty of child cruelty

Mohammed and Nafisa Karolia switched babies to cover up injuries to seven-month-old girl who later died.

Children of duke’s bigamous marriage can benefit from trusts

Children from the 13th Duke of Manchester’s second, bigamous, marriage can benefit from family trusts, the High Court has ruled.


Yankah v Yankah [2011] EWCA Civ 921 (28 July 2011)

Husband bankrupt; order for sale made. Wife sought permission to appeal, contending that the judge should have made a discretionary order transferring the former matrimonial home to her. Permission refused.

Iqbal v Ahmed [2011] EWCA Civ 900 (29 July 2011)

Appeal by executor as to reasonable financial provision for the widow of the deceased. Appeal dismissed.

O, R (on the application of) v London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham [2011] EWCA Civ 925 (28 July 2011)

Application by local authority for permission to appeal against order granting permission to parents to bring judicial review proceedings against local authority decision concerning the accommodation provision to be made for their severely autistic child. Permission refused.

Schalk and Kopf v Austria (App 301414-04) (22 November 2010)

Final judgment of the ECHR sitting as a Chamber. Male couple complained that the legal impossibility of a same-gender couple marrying under Austrian law violated their right to respect for private and family life and the principle of non-discrimination. Held, rejecting the complaint, that there is no breach of Article 12 where marriage is available to two people of the opposite gender but not two people of the same gender.

N v N (Costs) [2011] EWCA Civ (30 June 2011)

Husband successfully appealed against an order further extending the term of a maintenance order, and sought an order for costs. Held, no order as to costs.

N v N [2011] EWCA Civ (30 June 2011)

Wife obtained extension of maintenance term from December 2009 to April 2012. Wife appealed, and the term was extended to the end of August 2015, with a nominal joint lives order thereafter. The husband appealed against this order. Appeal allowed and original order restored.



Martin Narey: Adoption has to come back into fashion

We must overcome our misguided reluctance to remove children from abusive families, and transform their lives.

Children: Public Law Update (July 2011)

John Tughan, of 4 Paper Buildings reviews recent developments in Public Law Children.

Minister accepts Munro vision of less red tape

After formally commissioning a comprehensive review of child protection in June last year, the government’s response to Professor Eileen Munro’s report marks an important step in mapping out its future strategy for safeguarding the country’s most vulnerable children.

Cost Orders in Public Law Proceedings: A New Approach?

Does the general rule of ‘no order as to costs’ still apply in public law Children proceedings? Harry Nosworthy reviews recent judgments which suggest that the courts are now readier to make costs orders.


Doing Violence to Legal Aid

I’ve noticed another teensy glitch in the grand plans to save money through what has now become fondly known as “the LASPO car crash”.

Family courts guide to Media Access & Reporting

The family courts in conjunction with the Judicial College and the Society of Editors have has published a Guide to Media Access and Reporting.

N v N: The limits of appeal

Family Law Week has published two judgments in the case of N v N, which went before the Court of Appeal at the end of June.

How to negotiate: winning advice from Julian Hawkhead

I asked Julian to write a post about negotiation for this blog, after it struck me that his advice applies to plenty of real-life situations, not just divorce – and that perhaps readers, lawyers and non-lawyers alike, would find it useful.

Child protection inspections should put children at their heart

Inspections without notice and more observation of child protection work in practice are needed, Ofsted suggests.


25 wedding cake ‘toppers’. I wouldn’t say they were hilarious, but some are quite amusing. My favourite is the last one…

I hope you found this Newsletter useful. Please feel free to distribute the Newsletter to others (who may subscribe to it here).


The next edition of the Newsletter will be published on the 8th August. Until then, have a very good week.


John Bolch
Family Lore

Family Lore Focus

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