This is the second instalment of our monthly PSL Essential
Update series highlighting the most important news,
articles and judgments to keep you fully informed of all the latest family law
Female Genital Mutilation
virtue of the Serious Crime Act 2015 (Commencement No. 2) Regulations 2015, the
provisions in the Serious Crime Act 2015 relating to Female Genital Mutilation Protection Orders came into force on 17 July 2015. Watch this space for reported cases as
use of the new FGM Protection Orders develops.
On 16 July Courts Minister
Shailesh Vara announced a consultation on the closure of 91 courts and tribunals in England and Wales, raising
further concerns about possible access to justice issues. The consultation runs for 12 weeks so
get your responses in as soon as possible if you want to have your say.
The ongoing saga of Prest v Prest saw another instalment in the form of a Court of Appeal judgment (Prest v Prest  EWCA Civ 714) dismissing
Mr Prest’s appeal against the order against him in committal proceedings for
breach of the financial order. His lawyers have suggested that he will appeal
this decision so keep an eye on Family Law for the next update.
The High Court in
Birmingham City Council v Safraz Riaz & Others 
EWHC 1857 (Fam) ordered that a victim of child sexual exploitation
should be entitled to lifelong anonymity.
Although the court acknowledged that there was a public interest in
reporting of cases of child sexual exploitation, the public interest in supporting victims of child
sexual exploitation to come forward and report their abuse took priority. In
this instance there was no public interest in identifying the woman as a victim
of child sexual exploitation and she was entitled to respect for her private
life. The balance fell in favour of granting her lifelong anonymity.
The Family Justice Young People’s
Board (FJYPB) held their annual ‘
Voice of the Child’ conference on 23 July in
London. The day provided an opportunity for the Board to showcase its work and
to promote the voice of the child to a whole range of delegates.
The theme of the conference was
‘Effective Participation: Make it Happen – Make it Better’ and included
powerful testimonials from various Board members about their experiences in the
family justice system. A panel discussion took place and there were breakout
sessions on Child Inclusive Mediation, Children Meeting Judges, Children’s
Rights in Policy and Practice and the Impact of Family Break-Up on a Child’s
Wellbeing. The President of the Family Division Sir James Munby also gave an
address to the conference explaining the need for “a cultural revolution” to
ensure children are more visible in family proceedings.
Family Law Awards
Family Law Awards are due to take
place on 8October at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London and the
shortlist of nominees was announced on 28 July.
Don’t forget to vote for your choice in the community awards for Family
Law Commentator of the Year, Clerking Team of the Year and Family Law Chartered
Legal Executive or Paraglegal of the Year and to tweet about the awards using
In other news
See below for a list of ‘at a glance’ headlines of
important items and articles you might have missed: