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The Family Court Practice 2015 (Red Book) Family Court Practice 2015

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International Family Law


The practice title for family lawyers engaged in/dealing with issues European and worldwide

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International Family Law is the only English language practitioner journal dealing with the rationale and jurisprudence of family law as it affects families and individuals across Europe and the rest of the world. In International Family Law practitioners and academics share their skills with subscribers in what is a rapidly growing – but possibly daunting – area of family law.

International Family Law is available as either a print or online subscription. We are offering the journal in ePDF format for free when you purchase a print subscription, making the content easier to access. Find out more.

The journal features the latest official guidances, in-depth practical pieces and topical articles. Contents also include regular columns from the International Resolution Committee and the Permanent Hague Bureau, as well as news from our expert panel of international correspondents, case reports and book reviews.

International Family Law deals with the complexities affecting international family lawyers including maintenance regulation, marital property, financial matters, separation and divorce, and all aspects of child law.
  • Latest international news and developments affecting family practice
  • Topical articles and expert commentary from leading practitioners across the globe
  • Detailed Case reports providing analysis of latest European case-law
  • Jurisdictional briefings providing expert summaries of the most important developments
  • Regular updates from Resolution and Resolution's International Committee
  • Four issues a year ensuring you are kept reliably informed
2015 Subscription Information

£330.00 inc print plus a FREE ePDF of each issue
(Postage costs - mainland UK p&p free, non mainland UK p&p + £12.00)
ISSN 1369-5762
4 issues per year
Annual subscription period runs January - December

[2015] Issue 3

Latest Content


  • Future conferences/calls for papers
  • Correspondent updates
  • Re J (Morocco) and the jurisdictional
    cul-de-sac Richard Harrison QC
  • Hong Kong’s mental capacity regime
    for protecting property and affairs
    Richard Norridge and Jade Hu
  • South African courts abolish the
    delictual claim based on adultery – RH
    v DE
    in the Supreme Court of Appeal
    and the Constitutional Court
    Amanda Barratt
  • Recognising transgender parenthood
    on birth certificates: R (JK) v Secretary
    of State for the Home Department
    Peter Dunne
  • Protecting schoolgirls from terrorism
    grooming Professor Susan Edwards
  • The Commonwealth and the Hague
    family conventions Sir Mathew Thorpe
In Practice
  • Enforcement and variation of orders
    under the maintenance regulation: are
    our judges and legislators EU law
    compliant? Rebecca Bailey-Harris
  • Variation of orders under the
    maintenance regulation: a nod to
    substantive harmonisation?
    William Tyzack
  • Recognition under the 1996 Hague
    Convention Emma Nash
  • The lis pendens rules under Brussels II:
    certainty over flexibility?
    Charlotte Bradley
  • Non-recognition of member state
    orders under Brussels II Art 23
    Marcia Hyde and Tim Parker
Hague Conference Update
Case Update Claire Fenton-Glynn
International websites

"For those involved in any aspect of Family Law at an international level, the International Family Law journal (IFL) is a “must” for its content and clarity and for its depth and its scrutiny of a complex world where matters are often conducted so differently and with so much at stake for our clients in many cases."
Phillip Taylor MBE and Elizabeth Taylor, Richmond Green Chambers
Read the full review

Watch the full review

General Editor

Edward Bennett, Former Solicitor and Barrister, Field Court Chambers London

Consultant Editors

The Rt Hon Sir Mathew Thorpe
, Former Head of International Justice for England and Wales; Associate Member, 1 Hare Court
Elizabeth Walsh, Solicitor and Mediator

Advisory Editors

The Hon Mr Justice Moylan, International Hague Network Judge for England and Wales
The Hon Mr Justice Mostyn, London
Rebecca Bailey-Harris, Barrister and Professor Emeritus, University of Bristol
Nigel Lowe, Professor of Law, University of Cardiff
Maggie Rae, Partner, Clintons, London
David Williams QC, Barrister and Mediator, 4 Paper Buildings 

International Correspondents

Charlotte Butruille-Cardew Paris, France
Haroula Constandinidou Athens, Greece
Ian Curry-Sumner Utrecht, The Netherlands
Edwin Freedman, Tel-Aviv, Israel
Marsha Garrison, New York, USA
Mark Henaghan, Dunedin, New Zealand
Anne-Marie Hutchinson, London, UK
Jacqueline Leong QC, Hong Kong, China
Ranjit Malhotra and Anil Malhotra, Chandigarh, India
Werner U Martens, Munich, Germany
Michael Nicholls QC, Perth, Australia
Madam Justice Allyson Ramkerrysingh,Trinidad and Tobago
Judge of Appeal Belinda van Heerden (Retired), Cape Town, South Africa
Judge Paul von Dadelszen QSO (Retired), Hastings, New Zealand

Journals Manager
Matthias Mueller

Subscriptions Enquiries
Anthony Allsopp
Tel: +44 (0)117 918 1492
The Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984, Part III: the apotheosis of justice, English judicial imperialism or just the forum shopper’s friend?

Barbara Reeves, Partner, Mishcon de Reya and Emma Willing, Solicitor,
Mishcon de Reya

The genesis of the Part III jurisdiction
The years following the two world wars saw an influx of immigrants to England, primarily to bolster the labour market but also as a consequence of decolonisation and the partition of India that signalled the end of Empire. Many of those migrants retained links with their countries of origin sufficient to enable them to obtain a divorce there, or otherwise hailed from cultures which approved of non-judicial or customary divorce.

Throughout the 1970s the Family Division and the Court of Appeal were occupied by a series of cases concerning the recognition of such overseas divorces and the consequential impact on (usually) the wives’ ability to obtain financial relief following marital breakdown. Private international law required the English courts to give effect to judicial and non-judicial divorces that had been validly obtained under the applicable lex loci. Yet, in many instances, overseas jurisdictions either could not, or would not, make financial provision in favour of a wife. The House of Lords held (see Quazi v Quazi [1979] 3 All ER 897) that in such circumstances, the English courts were unable to grant financial relief, even to alleviate significant hardship, as no divorce proceedings were, or indeed could be, pending in England once an overseas divorce had been obtained and recognised. Following the recommendations of the Law Commission, the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984, Part III (‘Part III’) was introduced to bridge this ‘dangerous and miserable gap in our law’ (HL Deb 21 November 1983 vol 445 cc28–98, per Lord Scarman at para 66).

Having determined to remedy this lacuna, the architects of Part III provided at s 15 a jurisdictional filter to ensure that before financial provision could be granted, the marriage, the parties’ married life or the applicant for relief had a real connection with this country. A further filter was provided by s 13 of Part III, the terms of which require the prior leave of the court before an application can be made. Following Agbaje v Agbaje [2010] UKSC 13, [2010] 1 FLR 1813 the applicant must show that they have ‘a solid ground’ for making an application before leave will be granted. Finally, by s 16 of Part III, the court is enjoined, before making an order for financial provision, to consider whether England and Wales is the appropriate venue having regard to, amongst other things, the nature and extent of the parties’ connection with this and any other country. As we shall describe below, the appellate courts initially interpreted the provisions of Part III conservatively; arguably in closer keeping with what appears to have been the original intentions of the legislature during the Bill’s passage. More recently, it appears, those courts have applied the provisions of Part III more in line with the development of our domestic matrimonial finance laws. The consequence has been that relief from hardship has been supplanted by the search for a ‘fair outcome’: the basis of the domestic matrimonial finance jurisdiction (see White v White [2000] 2 FLR 981 and Miller vMiller; McFarlane v McFarlane [2006] UKHL 24, [2006] 1 FLR 1186). This desire to import a parochial concept of fairness into the Part III procedure has, we shall suggest, led it to become the application of choice of the otherwise disappointed forum shopper:

‘So, as Mr Todd says, in any jurisdiction anywhere in the more Western world, she has a very substantial claim indeed for capital provision. The wife’s side believe that it is a claim measurable in hundreds of millions of pounds but, on any conceivable view, it is a claim measured in several or many tens of millions of pounds. It may or may not be that she would achieve an award of that scale before the courts in Malaysia. But, as Mr Todd points out, there are very substantial assets here in England and Wales, and if it were to be the case that there was finally a divorce in Malaysia and an award for her was so low as not even to run into the low tens of millions of pounds, then she would at once be on very strong ground indeed
for making an application for financial provision under the provisions of Part III of the Matrimonial and Family Proceedings Act 1984.’
Chai v Peng [2014] EWHC 1519, [2014] 2 FLR (forthcoming) per Holman J at para [44]

It was not always so.

Read the full article  


The editors welcome the submission of material for consideration for publication. Material submitted should be original contributions and should not be under consideration for publication in any other journal. Contributions can only be accepted on the undertanding that all copyright clearances have been obtained by the author. The address for submissions is:

Edward Bennett
International Family Law 21 St Thomas Street
Bristol BS1 6JS, UK

Alternatively, material may be submitted by email to the following address:

Submission Format
Material should be supplied electronically, together with a printout. The electronic version and the print out should be exact copies. The document should be saved in Microsoft Word for Windows. Documents prepared on a Macintosh should be converted for PC compatibility.

Author's Details
Author's name and affiliation should appear after the submission title. Full address(es) for receipt of proofs should be given separately.

Proofs will be sent to authors for minimal, clear correction and for immediate return to the address given.

House Style
A guidance leaflet on house style is available upon request to the publisher, and authors are advised to obtain a copy before submitting material.

Authors should be as accurate as possible when citing references of any kind, and should provide the fullest possible details, especially when citing material from non-UK jurisdictions.

Substantive guidance may be obtained by contacting the general editor:
Edward Bennett 
International Family Law21 St Thomas Street
Bristol BS1 6JS, UK
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