WALES/ENGLAND – Family law disputes fall in 2011

The number of disputes taken to family law solicitors in the UK have fallen.

According to new figures from the Ministry of Justice, there was a drop in the number of people granted decrees absolute for the dissolution of marriage in the third quarter of 2011 to 30,400.

This is a decrease if one per cent compared to the same period in the previous year.

Similarly the number of domestic violence orders dropped by 14 per cent year on year to the penultimate quarter of 2011 to a total of 5,500, while domestic violence applications decreased by 15 per cent in the same period.

The figures showed that the number of children involved in private law applications made in the third quarter of 2011 was 30,200, a drop of five per cent on 2010.

This area has seen a general downward trend since the latter half of 2009.

However, there were some 7,700 children involved in public law applications in the same period, which was an increase of around 28 per cent on the third quarter in 2010.

According to Neil Robinson, vice-chairman of the Family Mediator’s Association, more people are turning to mediators as a first port of call before contacting family law solicitors, perhaps in a bid to limit legal fees in the current climate, the Independent reported.

“There are more people training to be mediators than there have ever been,” he explained.

“We’ve had 800 years of an adversarial legal system and it will take a couple of generations for it to set in – but it’s getting there.”

Ministry of Justice

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