Thursday, 21 March 2013

False claims of domestic violence rare according to study

For the first time, the Crown Prosecution Service has looked into so called false allegations of domestic violence and rape which have been published by the Director of Public Prosecutions. The report which looks at a 17 month period, shows that false allegations of rape and domestic violence are perhaps more rare than previously thought although reported cases remain serious.

The Family Law Act 1996 provides protection for victims of domestic violence. In certain circumstances it is possible to apply to the court for an injunction such as a non-molestation orders which if successful forbids the use of violence. Breach of a non-molestation order is also a criminal offence. It may also be possible to obtain what is known as an occupation order in certain circumstances which if successful would allow the applicant to occupy the home to the exclusion of the other party. It is however always important to obtain specialist legal advice before embarking upon such a course of action.

We are a team of specialist family law solicitors in Manchester. For more divorce advice please read our family law blog  or follow us on Twitter @Divorce_experts.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

The Pitfalls of Unmarried Couples

Cohabitation has become increasingly more common in the UK over recent years. Many people who have lived with their partners for a period of years are mistaken into thinking that if their relationship does come to an end that the same principles used by couples obtaining a divorce  will apply to them. This however is not the case and many unmarried couples, especially women, find themselves in dire financial circumstances following the breakdown of their relationship after learning there is no such thing as a common-law marriage.

Over the weekend the Daily Mail on Sunday alerted unmarried couples to the financial pitfalls following the breakdown of their relationship and we as leading family law solicitors  shared our experiences having seen an influx of work from separating unmarried couples.

The gap in the treatment of unmarried couples compared to their married counterparts is a key reform issue facing the UK over the next few years, but until a change is made by the Law Commission, make sure you do not fall into the common pitfalls of unmarried couples and seek legal advice.

We are a team of specialist family law solicitors in Manchester. For more divorce advice  please read our family law blog or follow us on Twitter @Divorce_experts

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Injunction against Charlie Booker lifted following calls for greater transparency in the Family Court

Injunction against Charlie Booker lifted following calls for greater transparency in the Family Court

The Sunday Telegraph has reported that an injunction imposed on journalist Charlie Booker prohibiting him from reporting a Family case concerning the future care of children, has been lifted. It is understood that the injunction barred Mr Booker from making any mention the dispute.

Charlie Booker claimed that the case was clearly in the public interests and the High Court agreed. We can only assume therefore that the separated parents in question were well known.

The Telegraph reports that in his ruling, Mr Justice Mostyn said he was lifting the injunction “because the emphasis should be on transparency” in the courts. He added: “Mr Booker is perfectly entitled to be as rude as he wants about anybody he wants. That is what freedom of speech is about.”

In April 2009, the Government made changes to allow the media to attend Family court cases. However, the court can exclude the media where it is thought necessary in the interests of any child concerned in the proceedings. As a consequence, judges often exclude the press from cases involving custody or residence disputes.

The power to exclude the press from the Family court has been heavily criticised by the press and viewed as an attack on freedom speech. Senior judges are sensitive to this criticism and agree that there should be more transparency. However, the crux of the issue will be whether cases involving decisions about the future of which parent a child should live with can ever be in the “public interest”.

For more advice on divorce follow our family law blog or follow us on Twitter @Divorce_experts