In all family court proceedings the children of the family come first, as the paramount consideration in cases under the Children Act or as “the first consideration” of the Court in financial proceedings within divorce under the Matrimonial Causes Act.
No one is likely to be surprised at this and yet parents who are in conflict about the amount of time the child should spend with each of them after separation, whether in or outside a marriage, still take up an inordinate amount of resources from the court and support services.
Cafcass (Children and Family Court Advisory Support Service) received last December an increase in 9.5% of new private law cases on the previous year December 2019, totalling 3,510 new cases involving 5,371 children.
Mediation is not being ignored as there has in the last year also been an increase in MIAMs (Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings) which means that parents are attempting mediation. But clearly there are still many occasions where the mediation process fails and the dispute ends up in court.
Mothering Sunday is fast approaching. Mother’s and Father’s Days are not hard to agree on, but mediation and other dispute resolution approaches could reduce the number of children cases ending up in court. Consult your family law specialist for advice concerning these options.
Tuesday, February 16th, 2021 Children