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Draft family justice legislation published

The Government has published draft legislation to implement its proposed changes to the family justice system following David Norgrove’s Family Justice Review.

More countries sign up to child protection conventions

The Russian Federation and Lesotho have deposited their instruments of accession to the 1996 Hague Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children.

Divorced couples' experience of co-parenting

A research study in America has found that couples that have gone through a bitter divorce don't always continue to retain the same level of hostility to each other.

Education of looked after children slowly improving

The educational attainment of looked after children and young people is improving slowly but there is too much variation in attainment, inconsistent support and a lack of clearly defined outcomes against which progress can be assessed. These are the findings of a report published by the Auditor General for Wales.

Mother wins reprieve in international custody dispute

Four sisters caught up in an international custody dispute have been allowed to remain with their mother in Australia for a further month after a Family Court judge agreed to another hearing, reports the Brisbane Times.

High Court rules on care consent case

The High Court has ruled that social workers were wrong to obtain consent from a woman to take her new-born baby into care when she was still under the affects of drugs administered during a difficult birth, reports the Daily Mail.

Cohabitation a popular choice amongst the over 50s

Recent research from the National Center for Family and Marriage Research (NCFMR) at Bowling Green State University has found that an increasing number of adults age 50 and over are choosing to live with their partner instead of marrying them.

The emotional impact of children moving away

We live in an increasingly globalised and fast-paced society. It is more common than ever for us to move overseas to work, and marriages between partners of different nationalities are on the increase. This creates obvious problems where children are concerned. While me may hope that our moves abroad, and our marriages, are permanent, often our work situation changes or our relationships break down. In these types of situation, children can become the subject of custody disputes of a transnational (or perhaps even just trans-regional) character. One partner may wish to return to their native land (or indeed remain in an adopted homeland) when a relationship breaks down.

Landmark court ruling may prevent expats from taking children 'home'

The case, reported in the Telegraph, concerned a Canadian divorcee who had been living in the UK with her former husband and two children. The woman wished to return to her native Canada after her divorce, and take her young children, aged two and four, with her. The mother complained of feeling 'lonely' and 'isolated' in Britain. She applied to the court for permission to take the children with her and was initially successful. However, her former husband, and father to the children appealed and the Court of Appeal struck the first ruling down. It did this on the basis that the father had been playing a 'major role' in the lives of the children since the couple had separated, seven months before the divorce. The father looked after the children for two nights per week (35% of the time, as the Telegraph point out).

Adoption UK statement on new adoption figures

Adoption UK has issued a statement in response to recent figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), which show that there has been a 6% increase in the overall level of adoptions in England and Wales.

Lord Chief Justice’s Report laid before House of Lords

The latest Lord Chief Justice’s Report has been laid before the House of Lords.

Civil partnership trends in the UK

The Office for National Statistics has published annual statistics on civil partnerships that were formed in the United Kingdom in 2011, as well as those which were dissolved.

Family justice modernisation proposals published

Mr Justice Ryder’s report into the modernisation of Family Justice has now been published.

Report calls for more action on domestic abuse

A new report from think tank the Centre for Social Justice has called for a widening of the offence of domestic abuse to include cruel mind games.

Research into the financial impact of divorce

A recent study from Australia has found that equivalised household income after divorce declined for women but not for men.

Research into the financial impact of divorce

A recent study from Australia has found that equivalised household income after divorce declined for women but not for men.

The research, led by the Australian Institute of Family Studies, found that some women were able to recover their income after six years through repartnering, increased labour force participation, and an increased proportion of income coming from government benefits. However, this was not the case for divorced women with dependent children.

Australian Institute of Family Studies Senior Research Fellow, Dr Lixia Qu said more Australians will experience divorce in the future and this has long-term financial implications for them and the Australian income support system.

“Divorce has a big impact on both men and women whose assets continue to fall behind married households and this impacts significantly on retirement income for divorced men and women who remained single, making them more reliant on government support to get by,” she said.

Joint researcher, Professor Matthew Gray of the Australian National University said while assets took a hit, most divorced women were able to recover their income position over six or seven years.

“This happens by a combination of increased employment rates, re-partnering and an increased level of government benefits. But many divorced women and men were left with a large and widening gap in their assets, compared to non-divorced contemporaries,” he said.

Committee protests against shared parenting proposal

The Chair of the Justice Select Committee, the Rt Hon Sir Alan Beith MP, has written to the Prime Minister in relation to the Government’s proposals to change the Children Act 1989 in an attempt to promote shared parenting.

More babies in care to receive a stable home more swiftly

The Prime Minister has announced plans to reduce radically the time it takes for a baby to move in with their permanent family.

New offence strengthens child protection laws

A new law is now in force to tackle cases of causing or allowing serious physical harm to a child or vulnerable adult. The offence, part of the Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims (Amendment) Act 2012, came into effect on Monday.

Divorce re-opens over shoe collection

A wealthy couple from New York, who divorced in 2009, have had their divorce settlement reopened after Daniel Shak raised a fresh suit, claiming that his ex-wife's shoe collection should have been included in the assets that were divided as part of the divorce settlement, reports the Telegraph.

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