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Financial remedies are ‘the Cinderella of family law’ says President

Financial remedy regulations are the ‘Cinderella of family law’ claimed Sir James Munby in the latest View from the President’s Chambers.

The new bulletin from Sir James is his 18th since becoming President of the Family Division in January 2013. It explains major reforms to the way family courts handle financial remedy claims – i.e. monetary claims following divorce, separation or the dissolution of a civil partnership.

He insists:

“This is the Cinderella of family justice. Some of its failings were exposed by the Law Commission in its 2014 report, ‘Matrimonial Property, Needs and Agreements,’ Law Com No 343. They need to be remedied. I set out here my vision of what needs to be done and my current thinking as to how this vision can be achieved.”

Financial remedy courts will be the cornerstone of the planned changes. These are due to launch in pilot form next month, with an initial three courts joined by others after Easter. Specialist judges will preside over these courts, which will handle not only financial claims from divorces (under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973), but also financial provision for children (under Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989), and other monetary claims arising from family disputes (under the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984). Eventually the courts will also deal with land trusts and matters of inheritance.

As the new courts are rolled out across the country, regional hubs will be established under single presiding judges the President explained. The national lead judge will be the renowned Mr Justice Mostyn.

The 18th View also refers to the importance, as the President sees it, of de-linking financial remedy proceedings from divorce proceedings.

Sir James is due to retire later this year.

You can read the full View here.

The blog team at Stowe is a group of writers based across our family law offices who share their advice on the wellbeing and emotional aspects of divorce or separation from personal experience. As well as pieces from our family law solicitors, guest contributors also regularly contribute to share their knowledge.

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  1. rum says:

    But will these new courts listen to litigants in person ? will they give non compliance for court orders ? will they allow bankers evidence acts for hidden bank accounts with proof? will they ever issue penal notices for non disclosure of company accounts ? will they ever take action if a legal barrister is clearly covering non disclosure and tax evasion , with evidence, will they drag the whole process out for nearly two years, and still be no closer to the pathetic statement of ‘ full and frank disclosure ‘ I THINK NOT . Because like in the programme that detailed ‘young v young’ nothing is enforced ! full and frank disclosure, is laughed at. The rich stay rich , the children stay deprived . It is a utter mess . Moving to one court , will make not the slightest difference . The rules are not enforced, and the men know it ! cinderella ? more like the ugly sister rules the court

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