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Family Law

The leading authority on all aspects of family law

20 APR 2011

New President's Guidance on listing and hearing care cases

Family courtThe President of the Family Division, Sir Nicholas Wall, has issued new guidance that outlines best practice to ensure judicial continuity and proactive judicial case management for listing and hearing care cases.

The guidance is intended to emphasise the importance of the Public Law Outline to legal advisers, magistrates and judges of all levels who do not sit exclusively in the family jurisdiction.

It  follows the publication last month of the interim report from the Family Justice Review headed by David Norgrove in which judicial continuity featured as a central recommendation.

The guidance states that in accordance with the PLO, on issue of a care case in the Family Proceedings Court the court must nominate case manager(s) to be responsible for the management of the case throughout its hearings in the FPC.

As soon as a care case is transferred to the county court from the FPC, the guidance states that it must be allocated to no more than two case management judges who will be responsible for every case management stage in the proceedings through to the final hearing. As soon as a case is transferred to the High Court from the county court it must be allocated to a Judge of the High Court as set out in the scheme for the Royal Courts of Justice.

In the December issue of Family Law the President emphasised the need to give priority to cases involving children [2010] Fam Law 1251.

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