Family Law Hub

Harassment & Domestic Violence

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  • This hearing followed on from that in Re C1 and C2 (Child Arrangements) [2019] EWHC B15 (Fam), involving the same father but a different mother. In this hearing, the mother of these two children, aged six and eight, applied to extend an existing s.91(14) order for a period of five years. Keehan J found that the defects in the father's personality and his character were such that he posed a risk of serious emotional and psychological harm to the mother of these two children, as it had been found to do with regards to the mother of the two children in the earlier hearing. A period of two years would be an appropriate one to give the father the chance to make the changes that he needed to make, for his own benefit, and for the benefit of his children. However, Keehan J regretted that, in the absence of further incidents since 2016, there was no legal basis for making or extending a non-molestation order and that application was dismissed. The mother's application for costs was refused. Judgment, 03/01/2020, free
  • The father applied for child arrangements orders in respect of these two children. Pursuant to s.91(14) of the Children Act 1989, the mother applied to prevent the father from making any further Children Act applications without leave of the court. The father was a litigant in person, but also a qualified member of the Bar, and yet his behaviour during the hearing was described by Keehan J as appalling, aggressive, incoherent and intimidating, for example with regard to the expert witness psychologist during cross-examination. This supported the conclusions in her report as to his lack of empathy and narcissistic personality disorder. An order for direct contact would have a devastating impact upon the mother, which would have a serious adverse impact indirectly on the two children. Keehan J was entirely satisfied that it was not in the best interests of either child to have direct contact with the father, and a s.91(14) order was imposed upon him for a period of two years. He was urged to seek professional help. Judgment, 03/01/2020, free
  • The father applied for the summary return of two young girls to the USA. Mr Robert Peel QC had to make a determination as to whether the Hague Convention was engaged and, if so, whether there were statutory exceptions to the principle that the children should be returned to the country of habitual residence for decisions as to their future to be made. He found that the father had not consented to any permanent removal of the children to this jurisdiction. He also found that the pattern of domestic violence and abuse was not such that the Article 13(b) threshold was crossed, nor did the question marks about the mother's immigration status in the United States establish an Article 13(b) defence. Mr Robert Peel QC proposed to make an order for return on the basis of the protective measures he outlined. Judgment, 29/11/2019, free
  • The hearing concerned applications: for costs, for a general civil restraint order, and for an injunction under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 against “an exceptionally vexatious litigant”. News, 14/11/2019, free
  • An extended civil restraint order had not been sufficent to restrain the former husband's vexatious conduct. Mostyn J granted the former wife and the receiver orders for costs against the husband. He also made a general civil restraint order against him, calling it "one of the worst cases of vexatious litigation misconduct" that he had ever encountered. An order was also made under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997. Judgment, 23/10/2019, free

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Latest training

  • Roshi Amiraftabi of 29 Bedford Row, reviews the key private children law cases, themes and practice developments from the past 12 months. Webcast, 31/05/2018, members only
  • In this webcast, which was first presented on 16 July 2015, Anton Eriera from 29 Bedford Row talks about domestic violence cases and the most recent developments in this area of law. Webcast, 31/07/2015, members only

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