Civil partnerships: time for the Government to decide which way to jump

The UK government has resisted making a decision on the future of civil partnerships but the Court of Appeal has now told the government that time is running out.  Rebecca Steinfeld and Charles Keidan have campaigned since 2014 for a change in the law.  On 21 February 2017 the Court of Appeal refused to allow their application for a judicial review of the government’s decision not extend the civil partnership regime to opposite-sex couples.  To do so, the Court said, would be to micro-manage government policy and it was legitimate for the government to take time to make a proper assessment.  However, the Court of Appeal made it clear that it was their unanimous view that the bar constituted a potential violation of their human rights under Article 14 (prohibition of discrimination) and Article 8 (right to respect for private and family life) of the European Convention. Continue reading

The art of negotiating divorce settlements

A good divorce is one that is as painless as possible. Sorting the finances out can be a painful part of the divorce process. The cost – both financial and emotional – of court litigation should not be underestimated. The delays in the court system mean that proceedings are often dragged out. Continue reading

‘Never too late to settle’ – The final judgment in Wyatt v Vince [2016]

You will be aware of the bizarre and unusual facts of this ‘new age traveller turned eco- millionaire’ case from the extensive press coverage it has received through its journey to the Supreme Court and now as the parties have reached settlement, so we will not recite them now. Continue reading

Does anonymising children judgments go far enough to protect children?

Privacy in family proceedings

We are now all online – and (like it or not) we all have an online presence. Sometimes that online presence is cultivated and willingly shared. Sometimes it is as a consequence of unwanted publicity. By using key internet search terms, people are more easily identifiable and traceable than ever before. This has a direct impact on the effectiveness of anonymising family Court judgments, when certain key facts in the case can reveal by searching on ‘Google’ who the parties are (and perhaps, consequently, where they live). Continue reading

Ashley Madison – view from the Divorce Court

If you found out that your spouse was on the Ashley Madison dating website, would you want to divorce? Yes, no, maybe? Whatever you might choose to do, it raises the question of whether membership of the website is sufficient from a legal perspective to petition for divorce.

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