Could we see families facing new financial penalties in the family courts?
Posted on 7th December 2021
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In recent days, Dominic Raab has spoken out about his ‘drastic’ plans to reduce the number of family law cases ending up in court by around half. Read on to learn more about the potential changes, and how our family law solicitors feel this might affect family law disputes and cases.
What changes does Dominic Raab propose for the family court system?
Speaking for the first time to the Justice Committee of the House of Commons as Justice Secretary, Dominic Raab openly discussed a need for improved out-of-court solutions for family disputes and family law cases.
He suggested that the majority of family law cases that do not involve any domestic abuse or safeguarding issues should be settled in ways alternative to court.
This could be promising to many people looking to take action and begin a non-abusive family law case, offering encouragement for more cases to consider mediation and resolution before resorting to court. Here at MG Legal, our family law solicitors know how expensive, stressful, and time-consuming the family courts can be for our clients, and so we always request that they attempt to go through family mediation before working with our family law solicitors.
Long delays in the family courts:
This news comes at a time of long delays in the family courts, largely due to the large increase in cases that have been started this year. According to government data, the number of new cases being started in the family courts from April to July of 2021 was 14% higher than that of the previous year. This figure is an average increase for all types of cases, with financial remedy cases increasing by a much higher 76%.
It is thought that each year, about 100,000 children across the country are involved in family courts cases alone, without considering those family disputes that are settled in mediation or resolution.
In response to the growing number of cases in the family courts, Dominic Raab proposes financial penalties to parents who bring ‘vexatious claims’, or unrealistic cases for which they have little hope of winning.
One promising up-coming development that could aid in this quest by the Justice Secretary to decrease the number of cases going through, is the introduction of no-fault divorces in April of 2022. The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act will make it much easier for couples to enact a divorce on amicable grounds, and without blame being placed on either spouse. They will no longer have to meet one of the five accepted factors as evidence of the divorce breakdown.
Currently, couples must state one of the following as the reason for their divorce:-
2 years separation with consent
5 years separation without consent
This new legislation will take away the requirement for any of these to be met, and in doing so will make it much easier for couples to agree to a divorce without it being essentially one person’s ‘fault’.
This could well prevent many divorces and family disputes arising from divorces to end up in the family courts, therefore reducing the number of cases going through the family courts.
Contact our specialist family law solicitors online here:
Whether you issue is related to marriage, divorce, changing of names, child contact issues, or any other family law issue, our family law solicitors are here to help. They are well versed with all changes and potential updates to family law, such as the introduction of no-fault divorces, and are more than ready to implement them into cases when they come into action.
Get in contact with one of our specialist solicitors, here, to speak to a family solicitors within one working hour. Or, email us here at email@example.com and get a reply the same working day.
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