We will keep you informed about training events which may be hosted by the FJB or other organisations, and will make educational material available on this page.

Practice Direction: Committal for Contempt of Court – Open Court

  |   Case Updates, Education & Training, Latest News


Please find attached the Practice Direction: Committal for Contempt of Court – Open Court dated 26th March 2015 for your reference. It provides very useful direction regarding the appropriate procedures for committal proceedings in open court; in private; and the delivery of the court’s judgment in such cases.


The Practice Direction applies to all proceedings for committal for contempt of court, including contempt in the face of the court, whether arising under any statutory or inherent jurisdiction and, particularly, supplements the provisions relating to contempt of court in the Civil Procedure Rules 1998, the Family Procedure Rules 2010, the Court of Protection Rules 2007, and the Criminal Procedure Rules 2014 and any related Practice Directions supplementing those various provisions.


The Practice Direction applies in all courts in England and Wales, including the Court of Protection, and supersedes the Practice Guidance: Committal for Contempt [2013] 1 WLR 1326, dated 3 May 2013; Practice Guidance (Committal Proceedings: Open Court) (No. 2) [2013] 1 WLR 1753, dated 4 June 2013; and President’s Circular: Committals Family Court Practice 2024 at 2976, dated 2 August 2013.

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Free CPD Seminar – Expert Fees and Mediation: Direct Guidance from the LAA

  |   Education & Training, Events, Latest News

The LLFJB Education and Training Sub-Committee are pleased to announce a free seminar on the crucial subject of the forthcoming LAA regulations on Expert Costs and Mediation.


The seminar will take place 26th February from 5.00pm to 6.30pm [prompt start essential] at Leicester Town Hall, and is expected to give 1.5CPD points.


Eleanor Drucker of the Legal Aid Agency has agreed to come and deliver the seminar.


Please see the attached poster for full details – and please use the attached booking form.

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Practice Guidance: Financial Remedy Proceedings after Foreign Divorce

  |   Education & Training, Latest News, Updates from the Bench

Please take note of the attached Practice Guidance on Financial Remedy Proceedings after a Foreign Divorce.


The Guidance is from His Honour Judge Rogers, Financial Remedies Circuit Judge for the Midland Circuit.


His Honour recommends the adoption of the approach outlined by Holman J in Barnett v Barnett [2014] EWHC 2678, and that such cases should be issued locally.

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The Leicester and Leicestershire Family Justice Board Annual Conference 2014 – A Review

  |   Education & Training, Events, Latest News

On the 10th October 2014 practitioners and family court users met for the first annual Leicester and Leicestershire Family Justice Board conference. This event followed the previous successes of the conferences held in 2013 and 2012 organised by the Leicestershire and Rutland Family Justice Board and the earlier 6 conferences organised by the Family Justice Council.


The conference, entitled Modern Families: Challenges, Choices and Opportunities, gave those attending a highly informative agenda and content addressing some of the many issues and changes facing family law in modern society.


The conference opened with a welcome address by HHJ Clifford Bellamy, Designated Family Judge for Leicester and Leicestershire and the official launch of the LLFJB website. The other conference speakers were The Honourable Mr Justice Hayden; Julie Selwyn, Professor and Director of the Hadley Centre for Adoption and Foster Care Studies at the School for Policy Studies, Bristol University; and The Reverend Dr Jonathan Pye, Methodist Minister. Delegates also attended workshops/ seminars throughout the day with professionals specialising in the research of family law and its practice. The workshops considered various aspects of modern families, including same sex parenting, adoption, and the impact of international law and abduction out of the jurisdiction.


The Honourable Mr Justice Hayden gave the key note address at the conference. The focus of his speech addressed the reforms within the family justice system. He reflected on the largely structural reforms, emphasising that there has not been a significant shift of view within the family courts when applying the legal principles. He spoke about the Children Act 1989, viewing this statute as one of the most significant pieces of legislation of the 20th Century given it changed the practice of family law and the law generally. The current reforms give family practitioners the opportunity to reconnect to the Children Act 1989 and its principle against delay; parental responsibility; and transparency.


Thanks are given to the LLFJB Education and Training Committee for organising the event and to all of the speakers for their contribution. We look forward to the 2015 conference, for which details will be advertised on the website later this year.

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Secure Accommodation Orders: London Borough of Barking and Dagenham v SS EWHC 4436 (Fam)

  |   Case Updates, Education & Training, Latest News

Please be aware of the attached case in which Hayden J sets out the principles governing the granting of Secure Accommodation Orders.


Hayden J makes it clear that such orders are to be a last resort, even when the s25 criteria are met, and specifically refers to the use of injunctions to safeguard children from exploitative adults (see BCC v Riaz).

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The First Q v Q decision – K and H (Children: Unrepresented Father: Cross-Examination of Child) [2015] EWFC 1

  |   Case Updates, Education & Training, Latest News

Please read the judgment handed down 5.1.15 by His Honour Judge Bellamy, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge, in the above case.


This is the first such reported case following Q v Q.


The subject child alleged sexual abuse by Father. It had been already decided that she should give evidence. Father did not wish to cross-examine the subject child himself but sought to challenge her allegations.


Father represented himself, but had a disposable income just outside of the LASPO limits and so outside of the scope of the Legal Aid Agency exceptional circumstances provisions. He could not afford to pay for private representation.


His Honour considered detailed argument, legislative provisions and case law before coming to the view that was a case that required that HMCTS should be directed to pay for an advocate to put Father’s case and meet the court’s duty to ensure Convention compliant hearings pursuant to Section 6(2) of the Human Rights Act 1998.



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