Tag : lund-bennett
Tag : lund-bennett
New research from Sweden has suggested that children do better in joint custody arrangements than when one or the other partner has custody.
Countless studies have been carried out on the psychological impact of divorce on children with many studies reporting the negatives of divorce. This study is unusual as it shows that in cases where parents are given joint custody, there is no difference in behaviour when compared to children coming from stable family units.
At least this is the case from the perspective of parents who were asked to fill in questionnaires about their children’s behaviour. Teachers, however, had a different view and the consensus was that youngsters from traditional families were better behaved than those from divorced families.
The ultimate finding of the study by researchers from Uppsala University, Karolinska Institute and the Centre for Health Equity Studies in Sweden -which included 3,656 children aged between three and five years old – was that children suffered less behavioural and psychological symptoms if they didn’t live with their mother or father the majority of the time.
The reason for the better behaviour of children was that parental quality was improved when parents had the opportunity to spend more time with children rather than just at the weekends.
The ‘triple talaq’ is an Islamic practice which allows men to instantly divorce their wives by pronouncing the word ‘talaq’ (the Arabic word for a type of divorce) three times. After decades of campaigning by women’s groups and victims, India’s Supreme Court has declared the practice unconstitutional.
In May 2017, the Indian Supreme Court formally opened hearings into a number of applications challenging the constitutionality of the practice of ‘triple talaq’ in Islam. As the practice was protected in law, increasing numbers of women receiving a ‘triple talaq’ from their husbands were being left without financial or emotional support.
The judgment was handed down on 22nd August 2017 with a 3-2 majority of the Indian Supreme Court bench finding the practice to be ‘un-Islamic, arbitrary and unconstitutional’. This ruling should therefore mean that the ‘triple talaq’ will no longer be considered a permissible practice in India. Other Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Bangladesh have also banned the practice.
Campaigners have hailed this decision as a huge victory for Muslim women in India. Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan, an activist group that was party to the legal battle has already prepared a draft law to send to the government in order to ensure that the decision is reflected in legislation as soon as possible.
Same-sex marriage is now legal in the Irish Republic, England, Scotland and Wales however same-sex couples are still banned from marrying in Northern Ireland.
Two legal challenges to the same-sex marriage ban in Northern Ireland have been dismissed by Mr Justice O’Hara in the High Court. O’Hara J said that the ban did not violate the rights of LGBT couples in the region and that it was for the Stormont Assembly to decide on issues of social policy. In delivering his judgment O’Hara J stated:
‘It is not at all difficult to understand how gay men and lesbians who have suffered discrimination, rejection and exclusion feel so strongly about the maintenance in Northern Ireland of the barrier to same-sex marriage’
‘The judgment which I have to reach is not based on social policy but on the law’.
The ruling applied to two cases, the first case was brought by the first female couple and first male couples to have their civil partnership recognised in Northern Ireland. The second case (known as Petition X) involved two men who were married in London in 2014 and were trying to get their union recognised in Northern Ireland as when they moved to Northern Ireland their marriage was changed to a civil partnership in law.
Earlier this month the Irish Prime Minister visited a gay rights event in Belfast and said the legalisation of same-sex marriage in Northern Ireland was just a matter of time.
For most people, taking the children abroad on holiday is something to look forward to both for children and their parents and many fond memories will be gained from the quality time everyone spends together. Unfortunately, things are not quite so straightforward in case where there is confusion over parental responsibility or when the correct permission hasn’t been sought by those who don’t have responsibility.
If you do take a child under the age of 16 away for a holiday and you don’t have permission from the person with parental responsibility, the you can run the risk of being charged with child abduction which is a criminal offence the definition of which is found in the Child Abduction Act 1984.
According to the law in England and Wales, the mother of the child will automatically have parental responsibility for her child and this will be shared by parents if the child is born when they are married.
In cases where the mother and father were not married when the child was born, the parental responsibility belongs only to the mother and the father must enter into a parental responsibility agreement which must be ordered by the court. There may also be cases where the father can become a guardian or adopt a child.
If you are travelling abroad with a child under 16 and don’t have parental responsibility, you must request permission in writing from the person who has that responsibility.
It is possible to make an application to the court under the Children Act 1989 for permission to take a child on holiday however you will need to prove to the court that you are taking the child on holiday rather than taking them away indefinitely. This can take time so should be prepared well in advance.
Channels of communication must remain open between the person taking the child on holiday and the mother or father to ensure there is no confusion and potential legal issues to deal with.
‘Unreasonable behaviour’ is one of the most common reasons used for divorce in the UK but this doesn’t mean that it is considered an acceptable reason in all cases.
The law in England and Wales doesn’t currently have a ‘no fault divorce’ system which means divorces can only happen for one of the following reasons:
Of the five methods mentioned above, ‘unreasonable behaviour’ is the least clear cut but in most cases offers a faster and easier route out of a marriage.
You don’t need the consent of your spouse to when using unreasonable behaviour as a reason for divorce and there are no long waits for a petition to be issued.
The only difficulty lies in proving unreasonable behaviour. Unreasonable behaviour can either be violence towards a partner or mental abuse. In either case it must be stated what the nature of the abuse was and the effect of it on the petitioner.
Sometimes what the petitioner considers to be unreasonable behaviour is viewed as not unreasonable enough to be used as a reason for divorce. This can effectively trap a person in a marriage for several more years before a divorce can take place.
It is important therefore to seek advice early in the process to ensure that a divorce being sought on the basis of unreasonable behaviour is seen as such by the court rather than an attempt to find an easy way out of a marriage.
Categories: Lund Bennett
A recent study produced by L&C Mortgages has revealed that some 1.8million adults in the UK have primarily stayed or would stay in a relationship in order to get on to the property ladder.
They found that 1.8million people had stayed with a partner in order to pay for the mortgage or a deposit. On average, 44% of the 1.8million remained in their relationship for at least a year longer than they would have if there were no financial consideration and a further 15% stayed for more than two years and 40% said they were still with their partner now.
David Hollingworth from L&C Mortgages said the results of the study were ‘indicative of the struggle people face when buying their first home’ and that it ‘isn’t right that people are sacrificing their emotional wellbeing in order to focus on financial stability’.
If you are considering purchasing a property with your partner it is important to think clearly when it comes to such an important financial decision. Once the deposit has been paid and a mortgage entered into, what happens to the family home upon separation may be more complicated if you have never married.
If you are buying a house with your current partner, make sure that you have a Cohabitation Agreement in place so that both of you are very clear about who walks away with what in terms of ownership. To speak with one of our specialist Family Law solicitors about a Cohabitation Agreement please call 0161 927 3118.
Mr Justice Peter Jackson provided judgment in Re A (Letter to a Young Person)  EWFC 48, which apart from the first few introductory paragraphs, comprises a letter sent to a 14-year-old-boy, referred to in the judgment as ‘Sam’.
Sam was the subject of proceedings to determine whether he should be permitted to move to Scandinavia with his father and, if not, what contact arrangements should be going forward.
Sam wished to go to Scandinavia however his mother objected to the proposed move and the Judge in this case refused permission for removal from the jurisdiction. At the end of the hearing, Mr Justice Peter Jackson gave his decision in the form of a letter to Sam which he read to his parents and gave to his solicitors to give to Sam and discuss with him.
Written in an informal, accessible language, the judgment explains why Mr Justice Peter Jackson concluded that the move would not be in Sam’s best interests. The letter also encouraged Sam to Google the Children Act 1989, which states that the welfare of children in family cases must be the judge’s first priority.
Mr Justice Peter Jackson notes that Sam received the decision with apparent equanimity. Mr Justice Peter Jackson has been praised for using simple phrases in previous a judgment to enable the mother and the older children to follow it. This judgment also reproduced an ‘emoji’ which featured as a point of evidence.
To read the full judgment and letter from Mr Justice Peter Jackson in Re A (Letter to a Young Person), click here: http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWFC/HCJ/2017/48.html
The number of brides and grooms aged 65 and over has increased by 46% over the last decade. The most recent Office for National Statistics (ONS) marriage data shows:
The ONS have stated that the increase in older people ending and forming new relationships is likely to be due to a number of factors such as the fact that people are living longer and also the rise of the ‘silver surfer’ phenomenon (a colloquial term used for older people who access the internet on a regular basis) may be boosting these statistics.
Data from the ONS shows that internet use more than tripled for those aged 65 and over between 2006 and 2013. ONS statistics produced earlier this year show that older people are now catching up with the young in respect of internet use. It has been reported that over 65s are frequently using online dating sites and this may also be behind the rising rate of divorce among over-65s.
Divorce usually has a substantial impact on most couples’ retirement plans. Whether you’re currently going through a divorce or considering your options, it is important to have a complete understanding of how the transition could affect your retirement plans.
If you are concerned about dealing with financial matters upon separation or would like to discuss any of the issues outlined in this post please contact a member of our team for more advice today on 0161 927 3118.
Deciding which school your child will attend can be one of the trickier aspects of post-separation parenting. Whatever problems existed at the time of the relationship breakdown will inevitably arise if one parent moves out of the area and wants their children to change school as a result.
Parents will be naturally concerned about the legal rights and responsibilities in respect of their children’s schooling and divorce can have an impact on the role each parent has for their child/children at school. We have outlined below, parental rights, responsibilities and options available in respect of schooling.
If both parents have parental responsibility (i.e. children’s mother or father (married to mother when child is born or on the child’s birth certificate), both parents have to agree to a change of school. Neither parent has superior rights over the other nor can a parent assert that they have the right to decide what school the child should attend.
If parents cannot agree on the choice of school, then an application can be made to the court under the Children Act 1989 for the court to make the decision. The two types of orders applied for are:
The orders listed above can be applied for on their own or as part of an application in respect of the overall arrangements for the children.
When considering an application the court will consider what is in the best interests of the child and will look at the ability of the parents to sustain the child’s attendance (e.g. school fees, travel to school). The court will also consider the child’s wishes and feelings (where they are old enough to have formed an opinion in light of their age and understanding) as well as any educational needs amongst other factors.
Separation may involve bad feelings between parents (and their families). Children can pick up on this which may make them confused or unhappy, or even blame themselves for a break-up. It is important that parents are sensitive to their children’s needs during this time and try to resolve their differences.
If you, or your former partner, are contemplating a change of school, obtaining legal advice early on in the process can help overcome any potential problems.
Our specialist Family team can provide advice to ensure that all appropriate steps are taken. Contact a member of our team today on 0161 927 3118.
While we see plenty of celebrity couples opting to cohabit rather than commit to marriages, the chances are that at least some of these relationships will be bound by a co-habitation agreement. This allows couples to work out who is entitled to what if a relationship breaks down.
The number of co-habiting couples in the UK continues to rise fast. The number has almost tripled since 1996 from 1.5 million to 3.3 million and now represents 17.5% of all family arrangements in the UK.
Unfortunately, a significant proportion of co-habiting couples are unaware of their legal rights with 26% mistakenly believing that they have ‘common law marriage’ rights equal to those of married couples. This certainly isn’t the case and if a relationship breaks down the actual status of relationships will be brought into sharp focus.
If for example a co-habiting couple own their home as joint tenants, then regardless of who invested the most into the property, it would be split 50/50 following a breakup of the relationship. 50% of a property would also be automatically be passed on to the other partner upon death.
Awareness of legal rights when it comes to children in the family is also poor with 73% of respondents in one survey unaware of what support they would be entitled to when being left to bring up children.
The mother and father of the children are required to contribute to the cost of bringing up children until they leave school or go on to attend University.
All of these uncertainties can be avoided by putting together a co-habitation agreement which removes many of the uncertainties that exist for couples who choose not to marry.