Fewer family cases were started across English and Welsh courts in the three months to March than in the same period last year, the government has reported.
There were a total of 63,344 new family cases between the beginning of the year and the end of the March, a six per cent fall on the same period last year, the Ministry of Justice notes in its latest Court Statistics Quarterly. Almost as many cases – 62,104 – were concluded during the same period.
In addition, the report states, there was a significant drop of nearly 50 per cent across the quarter in the number of private family law cases in which both parties have legal representation, when compared to the same quarter in 2013.
The report also highlights a drop in the average time required for the completion of care and supervision order applications in family cases. In the first quarter of 2014, this fell to 32 weeks – a hefty 24 per cent drop from 2013 and a fall of as much as 41 per cent since the first three months of 2012.
Read the full report here.