Westminster Legal Policy Forum

Next steps for family justice in England and Wales - mediation, court reform and protecting vulnerable users

TO BE PUBLISHED February 2020

This conference will look at the next steps for family justice in England and Wales, including:

  • court modernisation;
  • protecting vulnerable users;
  • developing care proceedings; and
  • the use of data and evidence to improve outcomes.

The seminar is timed to take place as the government considers responses to a number of key consultations on the family court structures, including the:


There will be keynote contributions from:

  • Sir James Munby, Chair, Nuffield Family Justice Observatory and former President, Family Justice Division, High Court of England and Wales;
  • Neal Barcoe, Deputy Director, Family Justice Policy Division, Ministry of Justice;
  • Adam Lennon, Deputy Director and Service Owner, Family, Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service; 
  • Dr Mike Shaw, Consultant, Child & Adolescent Psychiatrist, Tavistock Clinic London, Family Drug and Alcohol Court National Unit; and
  • a senior speaker confirmed from Citizens Advice.

Further confirmed speakers include: Adina Claire, Women’s Aid; Mor Dioum, Victoria Climbié Foundation; Usha Sood, Trent Chambers; and senior speakers confirmed from National Family Mediation and SafeLives.

The agenda

  • Improving data and research evidence in family justice;
  • Problem-solving courts - addressing substance misuse, mental health problems and domestic abuse;
  • The impact of changes to private family law proceedings - protecting vulnerable users and meeting demand and expanding mediation;
  • Supporting victims and ensuring effective legal advice for litigants;
  • Reforming care proceedings in England and Wales - Special Guardianship Orders, improving standards nationwide and innovative approaches to care;
  • Implementing court modernisation; and
  • Next steps for policy.

Price: £95 PLUS VAT

Shortly after every Westminster Legal Policy Forum seminar, a briefing document is produced. This is distributed to all delegates on the day as well as to our policymaker contacts in government, and to stakeholders more widely.

A seminar publication provides a timely record of proceedings, and acts as a guide to the latest thinking on current policy issues for those unable to be at the event.

This publication includes


Contributions from keynotes and panellists, including accompanying slides*
*Subject to approval

Delegate Pack

Information from the day, including delegate list, biographies and agenda


Transcript of questions and comments posed to speakers from attending delegates


Supplementary articles from speakers
and delegates