2021

Don’t Stand So Close To Me (In Mediation): How to Conclude a Probate Case In Lockdown

There is a chance, sadly, that another lockdown is coming. You may be reading this during our latest lockdown. Lots of people are concerned that their probate case will have to wait until the world is post-covid. Fortunately, the chances are it will not. Many of my lawyer colleagues deal with non-contentious work. A larger Continue reading

Small Money Cases can be the Hardest Particularly if the Parties have Spent All the Money Arguing over the Children

Sometimes some self-evident truths simply need to be said out loud and so, this short article does little more than draw attention to a first instance decision that says what we all know but, by reason of having only just been reported (and only in FLW so far) and coming as it does from Cohen Continue reading

When is a separate fact finding hearing necessary in care cases? – An update on the law

This is a very recent case in which this issue has been considered and which takes into account the current climate, and helpfully summarises the relevant law. In Lincolnshire County Council v CB & Ors [2021] EWHC 2813 (Fam) Mrs Justice Lieven DBE conducted an analysis of the factors that require consideration when making a Continue reading

Advocacy training 101: What to expect from the Middle Temple Pupils’ Course

Picture this: it’s a few weeks into your pupillage, and you’ve hit the ground running. You’ve been watching, note-taking, researching and learning, because that’s what first six is all about. But wait! There’s more to do than simply shadowing and scribbling. That’s right – there’s the compulsory advocacy training which pupils must undergo during their Continue reading

An Exercise in Self Destruction”: Azarmi- Movafagh v Bassiri- Dezfouli [2021] EWCA Civ 1184. A Look At Costs In Needs Cases.

This case involved a second appeal in a financial remedy case in which the costs had become so disproportionate relative to the assets that King LJ described the course of litigation as “an exercise in self destruction”.   It is a helpful guidance to how the court should consider costs in a needs case but has Continue reading

Proprietary Estoppel

Introduction Estoppel is a murky legal topic, encompassing a number of concepts that are easily confused.  This short note aims to momentarily clear the fog and allow a glimpse into some of those concepts. The doctrine of estoppel goes back to at least the 1600s.  There are many forms including Proprietary, Promissory, Contractual, Estoppel by Continue reading

Survival tools for a “hybrid” pupillage

On 1st October 2021 I began my pupillage with Becket Chambers. I had come straight from a London commercial litigation firm, where I’d spent most of the past year as a remote paralegal dealing with complex high-value commercial disputes. This role had involved fast adaptation to working from home as opposed to the shiny London Continue reading

Chambers and Partners, 2022 Guide

We are pleased to announce that Christopher Wall and Louisa Adamson have been ranked in the Chambers and Partners, 2022 guide. Family: Matrimonial Finance – South Eastern (Bar) Christopher Wall Predominantly instructed in matrimonial finance matters and has notable experience in complex disputes concerning private companies, valuable properties, trusts and international assets. He is also Continue reading

When Civil met Family: how to deal with TOLATA claims in Financial Provision cases

The Family Court is seeing an increasing number of cases where property is (or is asserted to be) owned by a third party.  As more parents assist children with purchasing a home or friends buy with friends, it is ever more likely that a financial provision case will involve consideration of who owns what.  Here Continue reading

Legal 500 Bar Guide 2022

We are pleased to announce that we have been recommended as a leading regional set in the Legal 500, 2022 guide. Christopher Wall – “Christopher has an excellent grasp of cases with a laser-like focus. He is cool and measured throughout contentious and complex proceedings and always delivers superb results” Louisa Adamson – “She is realistic Continue reading

Pre-Nuptial Agreements – Worth more than the paper they’re printed on!

To us Brits, proud of our unswerving fidelity to the tradition of judicial discretion, the pre-nuptial agreement has, traditionally, been viewed as an American curiosity. A handy plot device for saucy straight to video B-movies, and that thing which, when finally revealed at the end of the episode, gives Columbo the motive he was missing Continue reading

Further resources released by the Pension Advisory Group

Continuing their valiant efforts to make pensions and pension sharing more accessible to all, the Pension Advisory Group – made up of lawyers, academics and finance professionals – has released further resources to assist the general public.   The Group is best known for its seminal report, ‘Guidance on the Treatment of Pensions on Divorce’, Continue reading

Samuel Davis Successfully Opposes a Number of Applications in the High Court and Obtains Two Totally Without Merit Certifications in a Case Whose Litigation Background Stretches Back Over 30 Years

Samuel Davis, representing the Respondent, successfully opposed a number applications in the High Court, including an application for a freezing injunction and obtained two totally without merit certifications. The judgment can be found here Re Q June 2021 FINAL[1] and on Bailii here. The Case has featured in a Family Law Week Update and on Continue reading

A v A (Arbitration: Guidance)

In July, in the form of an appendix to his judgment in A v A (Arbitration: Guidance) [2021] EWHC 1889 (Fam), Mostyn J issued guidance, agreed and approved by the President of the Family Division, for the correct procedure to follow when challenging or seeking to implement an arbitral award. The case itself concerned a Continue reading

Magna Carta – A non-starter

Introduction As August turns into September and children up and down the country return to school, I thought it might be interesting to consider a subject which put me in mind of my own school days. Whilst dealing with a Family Law Act application, a member of Chambers had to grapple with an unusual defence Continue reading

The Factors and Guidance to make an application for Discharge of a Care Order pursuant to s. 39 of the Children Act 1989

Background: The combined effect of sections 1 and 39 of the Act is that on application of an entitled applicant the court may discharge a care order or replace it with a supervision order, in which case there is no requirement for the s 31(2) threshold to be crossed (the threshold for making a care Continue reading

E v L [2021] EWFC 60 (Fam) – Short, childless marriages, the sharing principle and absence of white leopards

The husband was aged 66 and the wife aged 61. The parties’ relationship began in 2015 when the husband immediately began providing the wife with financial support, paying her between £5000 – £10,000 per month. The parties became engaged in 2016 married in 2017 and separated in 2019. The parties disagreed over the date of Continue reading

Don’t Mix Your Drinks (or Tobacco Products)

As the restrictions on international travel and quarantine requirements are relaxed (at time of writing) many people’s thoughts will inevitably turn to foreign travel and, often, the opportunity to purchase and bring back duty-free or “duty paid” goods purchased en route or in countries with lower rates of duty, respectively. However, any traveller returning into Continue reading

And, breathe… The ‘Breathing Space Regulations’

Introduction   In this article, I will examine, in overview, the implications of the Debt Respite Scheme (Breathing Space Moratorium and Mental Health Crisis Moratorium) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 for landlords and tenants in the context of private residential properties.   Further guidance for creditors (landlords) and debt advisors can be found online.   Continue reading

An ever-changing housing market- how an unpredictable housing market may impact upon financial remedy orders

In recent times, the housing market has seen a significant uptake with many reporting that house prices have risen in the last year at their fastest rate for over a decade. With many attributing the current boom in the housing market to the stamp duty holiday period, the question is now being posed what will Continue reading

The meaning of the term “associated person”- s.62 (3) of the Family Law Act 1996

Why is it important to show that the parties are “associated persons” for the purposes of FLA 1996 (FLA 1996)? When the court make an injunctive order such as a Non-Molestation or Occupation Order, certain criteria must be met. We are all aware that it is only possible to apply for such an order under Continue reading

To be Known by Another Name: Discharging Parental Responsibility

Summary The recent case of X and Y (private law – change of name – termination of parental responsibility) [2021] EWFC B24 provides a useful summary of the law around parental responsibility and any application to discharge parental responsibility in respect of one parent (and in this case, to change a child’s surname also). Background Continue reading

Spousal Maintenance, Future Earnings, Income Needs and a Re-Examination of Waggott

Following on from Edward Kenny’s article last month on Maintenance Pending Suit, it seemed logical to think next about spousal maintenance at final hearing but, of course at that point thoughts automatically turn to the Court of Appeal’s decision in  Waggott v Waggott [2018] EWCA Civ 727, 2 FLR 406 and, what seemed at the Continue reading

CPR Part 81 Contempt Proceedings – What Has Changed?

Despite various amendments over the years, many thought the wording of Part 81 was unsatisfactory, repetitive, and unnecessarily complicated. Following a consultation exercise by the Civil Procedure Rules Committee from March-May 2020, the committee proposed a new approach to Part 81 which: omitted nearly all the substantive law; dealt with procedure in the Rules, not Continue reading

Conversations in Family Law – Part 2

Conversations in Family Law In conversation…… Louisa Adamson and Mel Andrews, Family Law barristers continued…. Part 2: Court Hearings “Covid-Style”, supporting clients and working mothers Part 1 link here Mel: So you have been to Court for “in-person” hearings – how has that been? Louisa: I remember being quite worried about going back into court Continue reading

Determination of Flexible Tenancies: Forfeiture Clauses – London Borough of Croydon v Kalonga

Flexible tenancies were introduced by the Localism Act 2011 and are a type of secure council tenancy with a fixed term. Whilst intended to assist local authorities in having greater control over their properties enabling them to re-allocate the same to their tenants on expiry, flexible tenancies were not as popular as had been anticipated Continue reading