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Searching for clarity in the family courts

The differing opinions of senior judges on matters such as the privacy of proceedings mean family practitioners can struggle to accurately advise clients, explains Alex Carruthers

22 December 2015

Once again, family law cases hit the headlines in national newspapers in 2015. As well as the steady flow of celebrity and 'big money' divorces, there were a few cases which came to prominence because of new principles being laid down by family law judges.

These included the cases of Gohil v Gohil [2015] UKSC 61 and Sharland v Sharland [2015] UKSC 60, which enshrined the principle that 'fraud defeats all' - that is, if one party to a divorce deliberately misleads the other about their finances, then any subsequent order that is made can be set aside unless it can be proved that the other party would have agreed to the order even if they knew the true state of the fraudulent party's finances.

Among the other notable cases, there were two strands which emerged:

  • What level of spousal maintenance should a party pay after a divorce ...

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