Family Law Journal – Cohabitation Policy: where are we now?

Partner and Head of the family department, Graeme Fraser has written an article in the Family Law Journal on Cohabitation Policy: where are we now? This article summarises Resolution’s responses to the Parliamentary Inquiry into the Rights of Cohabiting Partners and their proposal to reform Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989 in response to the Law Commission’s 14th Programme of law reform.

The response to the Inquiry sets out the legislative changes needed to improve rights protection of cohabitants, including a proposed legal definition of cohabitation. The equalities issues raised by the lack of legal protection include relationship-generated disadvantage, the impact of the common law marriage myth on different age groups, and the treatment of religious marriages not recognised in England and Wales.

The article has now been been published on the Family Law website. Read the full article here.

North London family lawyers shortlisted for LexisNexis Family Law Award

Head of Family Team, Graeme Fraser, has been shortlisted in the Partner of the Year category at the LexisNexis Family Law Awards 2021, while Associate Solicitor, Holly Covington, has been shortlisted in the Young Solicitor of the Year category.

Graeme is a well-respected figure amongst family lawyers, having served in senior committee positions with Resolution, including as current Chair of the Cohabitation Committee, and having recently been appointed to the Family Procedure Rule Committee (FPRC).

He is a past winner of the Family Law Commentator of the Year category at the Family Law Awards and his team was also shortlisted the Family Law Firm of the Year category at the 2020 awards

Meanwhile, up-and-coming Family Solicitor, Holly Covington, was nominated for the Young Solicitor of Year accolade, having impressed since joining the firm in September 2019. Since then, Holly, who qualified in November 2018, has handled complex matters usually reserved for much more experienced lawyers, winning praise from colleagues and senior members of the bar alike.

She also volunteers for the charity, Rights of Women, on the Family Law Advice Line.

Graeme Fraser said: “Family law touches on the fundamental elements of our clients’ lives, finances and identities in ways that few other areas of law do. It is vital that we deliver the best possible service to each and every client, taking every opportunity to reduce unnecessary conflict where possible.

“Holly has really impressed over the last two years. Not only does her technical skill belie her experience, but she has also demonstrated impressive dedication to clients and, particularly to improving outcomes for women in the family justice system.

“I am delighted to have been shortlisted and it is great to see Holly shortlisted too.”

Holly added: “It is wonderful to have been shortlisted and to have been recognised in this way by the judges.

“Our firm is strongly dedicated to its clients and this has allowed me to make a real difference over the last two years.”

The winners of the Family Law Awards 2021 will be announced at a ceremony in London on 24 November 2021.

Family Law Journal – International Cohabitation Practice and Policy

Partner and Head of the family department, Graeme Fraser has written an article in the Family Law Journal, which summarises the regulation and treatment of unmarried cohabitants in Britain, Canada and Australia. Cohabitation law and practice operates very differently in each of these jurisdictions.

The article has now been been published on the Family Law website. Read the full article here.

Resolution Podcast – Cohabitation Law Reform (Episode 2)

Partner and Head of the family department, Graeme Fraser appears as a guest speaker on the Resolution podcast on Cohabitation Law Reform (episode 2), hosted by Anita Mehta and Simon Blain.

The podcast looks at the case for cohabitation law reform in the light of experiences north and south of the border.

The podcast has now been been published on the Resolution website. Listen to the full recording here.

Family Law Journal – Family lawyers should welcome remote hearings and artificial intelligence

Partner and Head of the family department, Graeme Fraser has written an article in the Family Law Journal, on the benefits of remote hearings and artificial intelligence, and how it can increase efficiency by negating the need for court space and reducing unproductive travelling.

The article has now been been published on the Family Law website. Read the full article here.

North London solicitor helps promote the launch of the Family Dispute Solutions group

Family consultant, Peter Martin has been heavily involved in helping form the ‘Family Dispute Solutions’ group, a group of specialist mediators, collaborative family lawyers, financial advisors, and arbitrators,  which aims to promote the resolution of family disputes using non-court options and presenting clients with real choice as to the best method for them of resolving their family dispute. 

Peter will be speaking about the launch at the resolution conference next month, together with other members of the group which include Rebekah Gershuny of Freemans and Evolve Family Mediation and Elizabeth Sulkin of LMK solicitors.

To find out more please visit the Resolution website or contact Peter Martin by email or on 020 8349 0321.

Government funding for victims of domestic abuse

The government announces this week that it will pledge £76 million of funding to help support the victims of domestic abuse, a decision that has been welcomed by many including myself as a family solicitor. Whilst this is welcome start, it has been long overdue and comes at a time were many have been forced to adhere to lockdown measures and isolate with their abusive partner.

Government resources and funding for those suffering domestic abuse has been scarce, long overdue and insufficient for far too long now. It is a shame that it has taken the pandemic to shed light on the prevalence of domestic abuse and the fact that it occurs across all kinds of households and within many different familial relationships. I very much hope the Government maintains its support and focus on this issue once lockdown measures are eased but domestic abuse continues throughout our communities. It is important to note that whilst domestic abuse is overwhelmingly perpetrated against women and girls, it can also affect men and there have been a growing number of domestic abuse cases to illustrate this.

Those experiencing domestic abuse should know that they are not alone and they have a number of options available to them, during this pandemic and beyond it. Their safety, and those of any children, is the paramount consideration. I as a family solicitor understand that sensitive situations like this are complex and therefore require a tailored approach depending on the circumstances of each case.

We are here and able to assist you with legal advice that is best for you and your family.