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Family Law

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An insight to Parental Alienation

Unfortunately, it is not unusual in high conflict separations for one parent to attempt to influence their children into turning against the other parent. This situation is known as ‘Parental Alienation’ and has now been recognised by the Courts. There are several reasons why a child can reject a parent, including an appropriate justified rejection, […]

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Hello digital divorce process: Goodbye Paper Petitions

From 13 September 2021, HM Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCTS) will be changing how divorces are currently dealt with and implementing a digital divorce process. HCMTS have been digitalising the process of divorce and financial remedy proceedings over the last two years, taking many of the previous paper processes to an online portal. Blacks’ Family […]

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D-day announced for No Fault Divorce

On 7 June Ministers announced that the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 (introducing the ever-awaited arrival of ‘no fault divorce’) will come into force on 6 April 2022. The date is later than expected with previous suggestions being Autumn 2021. It is almost a year now since legislation was first passed on 25 June […]

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Dog custody battles: what are my rights and who has ownership?

A dog is for life, not just for lockdown In the last year, the COVID-19 pandemic has seen a huge surge of 120% in online searches about getting a puppy. There have been concerns from dog charities such as The Dogs Trust that the rise in those acquiring a dog may be followed by a […]

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National Lockdown No. 3 – What does it mean for your child arrangements?

As we move into the country’s third national lockdown, you might find that you’re more familiar with the rapid changes to our daily routine than previously in March 2020. However, for some parents who have only more recently separated from their partner and find themselves navigating new child arrangements for the first time, it might […]

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A surge in divorces in England and Wales

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has recently revealed data which shows that the number of divorces between heterosexual couples rose by 18.4%, from 90,871 in 2018 to 107,599 last year. Divorces in same-sex couples in England and Wales has also doubled, from 428 in 2018 to 822 in 2019. ONS has revealed that unreasonable […]

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The emotional impact of separation

As we approach World Mental Health Day on 10 October 2020, we reflect upon the difficulties of the past 6 months, including tackling the realities of a global pandemic and a change to normality for most of us. As well as navigating the new ‘normal’ day-to-day, there are some who are also dealing with realities […]

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Child Arrangement Order: Enforcement

Some parents, despite their best efforts, are unable to agree the arrangements for the children upon separation and a court application becomes necessary. The Child Arrangements Programme, which provides the court framework when there is a dispute regarding the arrangements for a child, is then navigated with matters usually concluding by way of a final […]

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Parental Contact Rights: Alienated Father Loses Legal Battle

In a recent Case concerning parental alienation, Judge Stephen Wildblood QC told the father he was “truly sorry” when delivering judgment in relation to his parental contact rights. The judgment can be read ­here. Sadly though, the alienation of children against one parent (usually the non-resident parent) is quite common in proceedings concerning children. The […]

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Parents not to use COVID-19 to inappropriately frustrate contract

The President of the Family Division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, has given an interview to the BBC and reminded parents that the current pandemic should not be exploited or used to stop contact unnecessarily. You can read the full article here. Sir Andrew McFarlane reminds parents of the importance of keeping the child’s welfare their focus […]

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Domestic Abuse: Protection from harm during ‘lockdown’

The Government’s guidance has now evolved to ‘Staying at home and away from others’. For those in a situation of domestic abuse or at risk of domestic abuse, and home is often not a safe place, there may be questions about the services available and how the guidance will impact them. It’s important to remember […]

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Coronavirus and child contact: Update following ‘lockdown’

Further to our previous blog post on this topic, dated Wednesday 18 March 2020, the circumstances have undoubtedly moved on and the Government has now extended the advice and requirements surrounding Covid-19. It’s important that you keep up to date with the advice from the Government and the NHS and know the current updates, which […]

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