ENGLAND – Westminster Legal Policy Forum Keynote Seminar: The future of family justice

Westminster Legal Policy Forum Keynote Seminar: The future of family justice

Timing: Morning, Thursday, 6th September 2012
Venue: Central London

Draft agenda subject to change

 

8.30 ‐ 9.00 Registration and coffee

 

9.00 ‐ 9.05 Chairman’s opening remarks
John Hemming MP, Chair, All Party Parliamentary Group on Family and the Court of Protection

 

9.05 ‐ 9.30 Family law in England and Wales: a context to Government’s agenda for reform
Senior academic to be announced
Questions and comments from the floor

 

9.30 ‐ 10.00 Implementing Government’s response to the Family Justice Review
Jonathan Djanogly MP, Parliamentary Under‐Secretary of State for Justice, Ministry of Justice
Questions and comments from the floor

 

10.00 ‐ 10.55 Reforming family law ‐ efficiency, expert evidence and shared parenting Perspectives from key stakeholders on Government’s response to the Family Justice Review and proposals for family law reform.

Will the proposed six‐month time limit for care and adoption cases allow enough time for the best available evidence to be heard, and to what extent will extra resources be required to ensure that cases are completed on time?

What will be the procedural impact of reducing the use of expert evidence? Does proposed legislation entitling fathers and mothers to a legally binding “presumption of shared parenting” after separation promote the best interests of the child, and what can be learnt from international experience of legislating in this area? Has Government’s response given
adequate consideration to a grandparent’s right of contact?

Senior representative, lawyer
Senior representative, children’s commission
Senior representative, expert witness body
Senior representative, campaign group
Questions and comments from the floor

 

10.55 ‐ 11.00 Chairman’s closing remarks
John Hemming MP, Chair, All Party Parliamentary Group on Family and the Court of Protection

 

11.00 ‐ 11.30 Coffee

 

11.30 ‐ 11.35 Chairman’s opening remarks
Senior Parliamentarian

 

11.35 ‐ 12.25 Family justice after the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Bill ‐ funding, skills and access

How will government’s proposals to remove the scope of legal aid for private family law cases affect the future of family justice? To what extent will Government’s £25 million a year commitment to pay for publicly‐funded family mediation reduce the number of family cases reaching the courts? Will proposed reforms lead to an increased number of litigants
representing themselves in family cases, and what are the challenges for ensuring access to appropriate representation? Will safeguarding funding for cases involving domestic abuse and child protection do enough to ensure appropriate access to justice for vulnerable groups? How will changes to the fee and remuneration framework affect legal aid practitioners, and what will this mean for skills and expertise in the sector?

 

Charlotte Image, Committee Member, Young Legal Aid Lawyers and Associate Solicitor, Wainwright & Cummins Solicitors
Jan Coulton, Chair, Family Mediators Association
David Emmerson, Chair, Legal Aid Committee, Resolution
Senior representative, charity
Questions and comments from the floor

 

12.25 ‐ 12.55 Modernising the family justice system
Senior speaker to be announced
Questions and comments from the floor

 

12.55 ‐ 13.00 Chairman’s and Westminster Legal Policy Forum closing remarks
Senior Parliamentarian Sean Cudmore, Senior Producer, Westminster Legal Policy Forum

Westminster Projects

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