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Why ADR methods can never replace the true justice of legal aid

Proposals for a ‘third way’ to resolve low level family disputes involving children through an ADR model are doomed for lack of funding, says David Kirwan

8 August 2019

Well, well, well. What an unedifying mess the family courts have become.

Unrepresented victims facing their abusers; judges virtually having to act as bouncers to keep conflicted family members in check; no hope of additional funds to sort any out it out ...

And just when it appeared the situation couldn’t get much worse, the Private Law Working Group (PLWG) – one of two groups commissioned by the President of the Family Division to look at how the court system deals with cases involving children and how it can be changed – threw its recommendations into the mix.

It was never going to be an easy task. After all, ahead of the launch of the public consultation on the recommendations, the President Sir Andrew McFarlane himself said: “The system is … trying to run up a down escalator. Everyone is working flat out but delays are creeping into the system.”

But the PLWG recommendations highlighted just how difficult it will be to...

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