Brighton Law School blog


Family Justice Reforms 2014: The Impact On Case Law One Year On

Family lawyers have been held to account by the upper court for compliance with new and existing Practice Directions resulting from Family Justice Reforms implemented on 22 April 2014. Yet the new terminology for Child Arrangements Orders (s12 Children and Families Act 2014) has yet to become a feature of case law, Resolution members heard from a case law update at their 2015 conference.

In the Children Case Law update by Elspeth Thomson (David Grey Solicitors) and Samantha Little (Russell-Cooke Solicitors), Elspeth had assumed that one year on, she would be reviewing private law cases relating to the court’s interpretation of the Child Arrangement Orders (s12 Children and Families Act 2014). She had expected cases to be discussing points such as the meaning of ‘spending time with’ and ‘living with’ and from October 2014, ‘continued parental involvement’ (s11). She had found no cases.

Elspeth offered a number of reasons for this:

  • it might be too soon for cases to have reached court
  • private law applications have dropped,
  • matters are resolved out of court
  • the rise in litigants in person as a result of cuts in legal aid mean that legal points that could be employed as a result of the new Act are not well understood
  • The introduction of ‘gate-keeping’ means more cases are being dealt with further down the judicial tree or
  • That legislative changes have not impacted to a significant degree because the principles introduced in the Act such as ‘parental involvement’ (Section 11, amendment to section 1 of the Children Act 1989) were already being followed by practitioners.

Compliance, or rather non-compliance, with new Practice Directions however, did arise in a number of upper court appeals; in one case President of the Family Law Courts, Lord Justice Munby warned that non-compliant practitioners will risk being named and shamed and that practitioners must comply with Practice Direction 27A on the format of bundles (Re L (A CHILD) [2015] EWFC 15), Seagrove re Sullivan [2014] EWHC 4110 reiterated that bundles need to be fewer than 350 pages; and finally practitioners cannot change the court timetable without involving the courts (Re W (CHILDREN [2014] EWFC 22).

In terms of case law, therefore the message to practitioners is to know and act on new and changed Practice Directions – the courts are leading the way in holding family lawyers to account.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tracy Nuttall • 22/04/2015

Previous Post

Next Post


  1. OlofMeister 02/11/2023 - 4:48 pm Reply

    I recommend to pay attention to pnn . They have experience in developing software for automating production processes. Their solutions will help you optimize production and increase efficiency. i recommend you to try their service!

  2. AmirBarva 03/11/2023 - 7:34 pm Reply

    Motion graphics have become a dynamic force in the digital age, bridging the gap between static visuals and full-fledged animation. They excel at engaging audiences and simplifying complex ideas, making them a cornerstone of visual storytelling. They are a crucial tool in enhancing content and making a lasting impact, exemplified by artists like Gabriel Pulecio, who seamlessly blend art and technology to captivate viewers.

  3. CyberCelestial 04/11/2023 - 3:03 pm Reply

    Bu saytı yoxlayın və ətraflı məlumat əldə edin. Keyfiyyətli məqalələr burada mövcuddur.

  4. Cloudsicker 28/02/2024 - 2:18 pm Reply

    Hello there. Melbet has recently released their mobile app for easy use of their services and website features. If you are interested, you can find out more at this link . Here you will find all the available information about the mobile app, its functionality, and the bonuses that await you. There is also interesting information about transactions and live time. The app is available for both Android and IOS. It worked well for me.

  5. bscnews 25/05/2024 - 1:28 pm Reply

    I am happy that you simply shared this useful information with us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing. 슬롯사이트 순위

  6. outlookindiacom 25/05/2024 - 1:29 pm Reply

    appreciate it for your hard work. You should keep it up forever! Best of luck. 카지노사이트

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published / Required fields are marked *

Skip to toolbar