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David Burrows, Solicitor Advocate:
Disclosure rules in family proceedings are a mixture - sometimes not coherent - of common law (often absorbed from Civil Procedure Rules 1998), case law and rules. Not all of these are necessarily consistent; and it is not clear to what extent certain rules - for example as to full disclosure - apply in the same way to children and to money proceedings. This article is the first in a short series which reviews disclosure, privilege and confidentiality, the without prejudice rule and public interest immunity.
A subsidiary aim of the series is to alert mediators and others involved in dispute resolution to particular issues which may arise for them in mediation. Is there a conflict between such duties of full relevant disclosure as bind the parties, and their and the mediator's duties' of confidentiality? Can a mediator be called to give evidence as to confidential matters if mediation fails, or if a party seeks to use the cloak of privilege to hide dishonesty? What are the limits of confidentiality where children are concerned; or where a mediator fears a crime may be committed?
The full version of this article appears in the November 2013 issue of Family Law.
Formerly entitled the Ancillary Relief Handbook this is the first resort for thousands of...