The unrivalled source of news, comments, articles and cases on developments affecting international family law practice.
International Family Law looks at some of the deeper issues concerning the rationale and jurisprudence of existing law. International family law reform can best go forward when practitioners and academics learn from and communicate with each other. Available as either a print or online subscription.
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Announcing Special Tribute Issue
This month the Rt Hon Lord Justice Thorpe retires from the judiciary, the Court of Appeal and particularly as Head of International Family Justice for England and Wales, a post he has held since 2005.
To mark the tremendous stature and recognition Sir Mathew has brought to the post the editors of International Family Law, of which he is consultant editor, have produced a Special Issue in his honour, with contributions from over 30 leading members of the international judiciary and academic life including the Lord Chief Justice and Baroness Butler-Sloss. Read more about the presentation which took place, where Lord Justice Thorpe was presented with this special tribute issue.
View the contents of this essential issue and the special contributions by Edward Bennett, Legal Secretary to the Head of International Family Justice for England and Wales and also The Rt Hon The Lord Judge, Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales.
About the Journal
As well as dealing with practical issues affecting lawyers' case work, International Family Law looks at some of the deeper issues concerning the rationale and jurisprudence of existing law. International family law reform can best go forward when practitioners and academics learn from and communicate with each other.
Edited by Elizabeth Walsh, the respected editor of, with the help of leading family law specialists from around the world, International Family Law will keep you fully informed of all the latest developments in such subject areas as; Forum shopping, International enforcement, International parental child abduction, conflicts of matrimonial and property laws and isclosure of evidence.
Regular articles on the wider cultural issues of divorce around the world also help you to comprehend the context of each case.This unique, wide-ranging coverage ensures that International Family Law is an essential resource for family law libraries everywhere.
Each issue contains:
- 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 Commiittee
- Four issues a year ensuring you are kept reliably informed
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Edward Bennett, Guest Editor, Legal Secretary to the Head of International Family Justice for England and Wales
When, over a decade ago, Lord Justice Thorpe commenced battle with the barristers in the Court of Appeal case of Shaw v Shaw  EWCA Civ 1298, he could not have imagined that the lanky and somewhat scruffy work experience student sitting in the public gallery trying to look useful, would end up working for him. It was inconceivable to me at the time that I would end up practising family law, let alone working for the person who first sparked my interest in the legal profession. It has been an immense privilege to do so and I will forever remain enormously grateful for the opportunity to try to keep up with him, as his Legal Secretary.
Readers of this journal, both from England and Wales and overseas, need no introduction either to Sir Mathew, his long and distinguished judicial career, or his contribution to both domestic and international family law and practice. Throughout my time working with him, this has been epitomised by certain memorable comments. A judge from a civil law jurisdiction referred to him in an e-mail as ‘the one and the only’. For another judge, he is ‘quite simply, the boss’. Given such respect and warmth of feeling, it was self-evident that a way should be found to recognise, in a tangible form, Sir Mathew’s contribution to international family law, and his impact on it. With the diverse range of contributions from an equally varied combination of authors, this special issue represents a modest attempt to capture this.
Anyone who has worked with or come across Sir Mathew will know ... Read full Introduction
The Rt Hon The Lord Judge, Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales
It is a great pleasure to contribute to this special issue of International Family Law and recognise the longstanding and immense contribution of Mathew Thorpe to the development of trans-national family law and practice. I wish to thank him personally and on behalf of the English judiciary for all his work in this field.
The Court of Appeal will not only lose an undisputed master craftsman in the art of the ex tempore judgment, but an outstanding judge whose focus has always been grounded in common sense, and the reality that in the deeply sensitive world of family law, any attempt to resolve such disputes should be firmly centred on practical and
The office of Head of International Family Justice was created in 2005, by the then Lord Chief Justice and Lord Chancellor in order to deal with the steady and continuing growth of international family litigation and its consequent demands. There will be no surprise in the international family law community if I say that Mathew has made this role his own. I need look no further than the comments in 2009 of Chief Justice Bryant AO of the Family Court of Australia, who has referred to Mathew’s work in developing the post and cementing its reputation
worldwide as ‘groundbreaking’. (D Bryant, ‘Direct Judicial Communications in 2018: what can we expect?’ The Judges Newsletter on International Child Protection, Vol XV (2009) pp 172–174.)
A great and lasting expression of Matthew's practical approach has been the commitment to the development and facilitation of trans-national judicial collaboration ... Read full Preface
Special Issue Features
- Introduction Edward Bennett
- Preface The Rt Hon The Lord Judge
- Mathew Thorpe The Rt Hon The Baroness Butler-Sloss of Marsh Green GBE
- Keeping pace with international family law: safeguardingthe UK position Professor Nigel Lowe
- Keeping pace with international family law: a view from the trenches Michael Nicholls QC
- The growth of private international law: a tribute to Lord Justice Thorpe His Hon Judge Peter Boshier
- The International Hague Network of Judges: Mathew’s initiative Hon Chief Justice Diana Bryant AO, Hon Justice Victoria Bennett and Hon Joseph Kay
- The future of judicial co-operation: building on recent innovations Philippe Lortie and Ignacio Goicoechea
- Advantages of concentrated jurisdiction in cases of international restitution: the Mexican experience Judge Adriana Canales Perez and Judge Oscar Ververa Rivero
- Using video conferences and other modern means of communication to hear a party in cross-border family proceedings Judge Martina Erb-Klünemann
- Direct judicial communication in international child maintenance cases: the Brazilian legal system Judge Monica Sifuentes
- Mathew Thorpe and the Anglophone-Germanophone Judicial Conference on International Family Law Dr Rolf Wagner, Dr Michael Schoell and Judge Dr Robert Fucik
- International relocation in English law: Thorpe LJ’s discipline and its application Dr Rob George and Dr Ornella Cominetti
- Moving towards relocation reform in Canada Hon Madam Justice Robyn M Diamond
- Relocation in Spanish law and the recent Spanish Supreme Court ruling 642/2012, 26 October: moving forward with a firm step Hon Judge Francisco Javier Forcada Miranda
- Relocation of children: law and practice in the United States Hon James Garbolino, Hon Judith Kreeger, Hon Peter Messitte and Hon Mary Sheffield
- Lord Justice Thorpe and International Family Law Hon Mr Justice Tassaduq Hussain Jillani
- The work of judges in support of the 1980 Hague Convention on Child Abduction and speed of appeals against Hague return orders Professor William Duncan CMG
- The movement of children in Europe: mutual trust, distrust and human rights Professor Peter McEleavy
- The Swiss Introduction Law to the 1980 Hague Convention – trying to do the splits (Das schweizerische Einführungsgesetz zum Haager Übereinkommen 1980 – der Versuch eines Spagats) Judge Daniel Bähler
- The Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction: the Singapore experience Judge Tuat-Yien Foo and Judge Edgar Foo
- Challenges of implementing The Hague Convention on Child Abduction in non-contracting states: the Kenyan experience Hon Lady Justice Martha Koome
- Dissecting Chafin v Chafin: the propriety of appeal after return of a child pursuant to the Hague Abduction Convention – mootness, stays and comity Professor Linda Silberman and Professor Robert Spector
- Lord Justice Thorpe: an appreciation by Reunite International Child Abduction Centre Alison Shalaby OBE, Anne Marie Hutchinson OBE, Henry Setright QC and Edward Devereux
- Financial relief on divorce: a civil law and common law perspective from England with an eye to France and Germany William Longrigg
- International commercial surrogacy and the judiciary Professor Mark Henaghan
- The law and practice of child cases in Japan Judge Seiichiro Nishioka
- When judges communicate with children: practice and training in Germany Eberhard Carl
- The custody rights of unmarried fathers under Irish law and the consequences for protections against child abduction Hon Ms Justice Mary Finlay Geoghegan
- Placement of children outside England and Wales: international adoption, special guardianship and the Hague Convention 1996 – known unknowns? Ayeesha Bhutta and Ruth Cabeza
- Lord Justice Thorpe: a teacher and a friend Hon Mr Justice Cheung
Elizabeth Walsh, Solicitor and Mediator, London
Rebecca Bailey-Harris, Barrister and Professor Emeritus, University of Bristol
Nigel Lowe, Professor of Law, University of Cardiff
The Hon Mr Justice Mostyn, London
Maggie Rae, Partner, Clintons, London
The Rt Hon Lord Justice Thorpe, Head of International Family Law, England and Wales
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