Skip to main content

Latest news

7 May 2021

Experts and the Family Justice System: Widening the Pool (opens in a new tab)

The Experts Sub-Committee held its inaugural event on 25 March 2021

30 April 2021

Adoption in the 21st Century and the Bridget Lindley Memorial Lecture – March 2021 (opens in a new tab)

10 March  2021

Event date: 25 March 2021, 5.30pm to 7.30pm
Deadline for registration is 1pm on Friday 19 March 2021

9 February 2021

The Family Justice Council is pleased to endorse Advicenow’s Survival guide to pensions on divorce (external link, opens in a new tab).

This guide is specifically designed to help people going through divorce or dissolution.

Including pensions in the division of a couple’s assets on divorce, or the dissolution of a civil partnership, is vitally important in ensuring a fair outcome for both parties. This matters, regardless of whether they are already retired, contemplating retirement, or view retirement as a distant prospect.

The Family Justice Council is pleased to endorse Advicenow’s Survival guide to pensions on divorce (external link, opens in a new tab). This guide is specifically designed to help people going through divorce or dissolution. It makes a potentially daunting topic understandable and manageable, by explaining why and how pensions should be included in financial settlements and providing a wealth of accessible guidance on the practical aspects of doing so. The guide will be invaluable for people tackling divorce or dissolution without a lawyer, as well as for all those seeking a better grasp of this often neglected or avoided issue.

The survival guide is the accessible version of the definitive Guide to the Treatment of Pensions on Divorce (external link, opens in a new tab) produced in 2019 by the Pensions Advisory Group, an interdisciplinary working group supported by the Family Justice Council and the President of the Family Division.

14 December 2020

Exploring the report and recommendations of the expert panel on: Assessing Risk of Harm to Children and Parents in Private Law Children Cases (opens in a new tab)

The Family Justice Council held a virtual discussion forum on Monday, 14 December 2020, looking at the report (external link, opens in a new tab) and recommendations of the expert panel on Assessing the Risk of Harm to Children and Parents in Private Law Children Cases.

10 November 2020

Safety from Domestic Abuse and Special Measures in Remote and Hybrid Hearings – guidance published (opens in a new tab)

The President of the Family Division, Sir Andrew McFarlane, has published the Safety from Domestic Abuse and Special Measures in Remote and Hybrid Hearings guidance.

 5 November 2020

The President of the Family Division Working Group on Medical Experts in the Family Courts – Final Report (PDF, opens in a new tab)

The final report of the Working Group on Medical Experts in the Family Courts was published on Thursday 5 November 2020.

28 October 2020

We are pleased to announce the following appointment to the Council: Bernadette MacQueen as the new Legal Adviser member and Fiona Straw as the new Paediatrician member

The appointment is for three years from September 2020 and October 2020 respectively.  Both posts are unremunerated.  The appointments process for each post was conducted in line with the principles set out in the Governance Code on Public Appointment.

28 July 2020

The Family Justice Council will hold its seventh Open Meeting on 19 October 2020 (opens in a new tab)

July 7 2020
Family Justice Council: applications invited from Paediatricians- closing date extended to noon on 24 August (opens in a new tab) Now closed

July 7 2020

Appointment of new member to the Family Justice Council

We are pleased to announce the following appointment to the Council: Mavis Amonoo- Acquah as the new Barrister member.
The appointment is for three years from July 2020.  The post is unremunerated.  The appointments process for each post was conducted in line with the principles set out in the Governance Code on Public Appointments.

15 June 2020
Message from the President of the Family Division (opens in a new tab)

25 March 2020
Coronavirus Crisis – Guidance for parents whose children are the subject of Child Arrangement Orders made by the Family Court (opens in a new tab)

2 January 2020
Appointment of new member to the Family Justice Council
We are pleased to announce the following appointment to the Council: Jenny Beck as the new Private Law Solicitor member
The appointment is for three years from January 2020.  The post is unremunerated.  The appointments process for each post was conducted in line with the principles set out in the Governance Code on Public Appointments.

20 December 2019
Family Justice Council – 13th Annual Debate (opens in a new tab)
The Family Justice Council held its 13th Annual Debate and panel discussion in London on Wednesday, 4 December 2019, from 5-7pm. The motion was
Do separating parents need the Family Court?
NB: A podcast of the debate (external link, opens in a new tab) is available to listen to. A transcript of the debate (PDF, opens in a new tab) is available to read.

1 July 2019
Guidance on the Treatment of Pensions on Divorce – a guide for professionals
The Family Justice Council is pleased to announce the publication of A Guide to the Treatment of Pensions on Divorce (PDF, opens in a new tab).Produced by the multidisciplinary Pensions Advisory Group, with the support of the Council, the report provides a clear good practice guide for family judges, lawyers and pension experts.  It hopes to improve communication amongst the professionals and help address the shortfall in understanding about how they should deal with the valuation, sharing or offsetting of pension fund assets in divorce settlements. Further information (external link, opens in a new tab) can be found online.

24 May 2019
Interim Guidance on Special Guardianship (PDF, opens in a new tab)

1. This interim guidance is issued by the Family Justice Council with the approval of the Sir Andrew McFarlane, President of the Family Division, in response to some of the issues identified in Re P-S (Children) [2018] EWCA Civ 1407. Its primary purpose is to address cases where an extension to the statutory 26-week time limit is sought in order to assess potential special guardians, more fully, within public law proceedings.
2. In producing this guidance, the Council has worked closely with the President’s Public Law Working Group, chaired by Mr Justice Keehan and with the researchers commissioned by the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory, and led by CoramBAAF in partnership with Lancaster University, to review the research evidence on special guardianship. More comprehensive guidance on public law is expected later in the year but the Council felt there was a need to provide some interim guidance on special guardianship to assist practitioners, now, and to help start the process of change.

24 May 2019
Timetabling and timescales for full Family and Friends Assessments (PDF, opens in a new tab)
It has become evident that Directions are being made for completion of full Family and Friends Assessments in unachievably short timescales, sometimes between 6–8 weeks, in the mistaken belief that compliance with the 26 week timescale is the determinative priority in the management of a case.

22 March 2019
FJC Conference and Bridget Lindley Memorial Lecture 2019 – Thresholds for state intervention (opens in a new tab)
The Family Justice Council conference and Bridget Lindley Memorial Lecture took place on 12th March 2019

Older news stories are available on the Archive – news (opens in a new tab) webpage.