Timed as the Government explored new ways of improving the family justice system - and in the context of rising numbers of both public and private family law cases being brought - this seminar considered key challenges and opportunities for the development of family justice policy in England and Wales.
Delegates considered emerging issues in divorce law, looking at the effectiveness of initial trials to introduce on-line divorce and the de-linking of divorce and ‘money’ claims, as well as latest thinking on recent calls for the introduction of ‘no-fault’ divorce.
Further sessions considered latest trends in care proceedings, looking in particular at challenges for managing the demands being placed on court services by increasing case-loads, maintaining standards following the introduction of the 26 week time limit, and ensuring that the system remains centred around the interests of the child. Following Government’s recent announcement of further funding for problem-solving court services, delegates also considered the future of family drug and alcohol courts projects, and the implications for both court-users and local authorities.
This conference brought together policymakers and the judicial representatives with a range of interested stakeholders, including lawyers, expert witnesses, local authorities and service-user groups, as well as campaign groups, commentators and reporting press.