Changes to domestic violence evidence requirements come into effect

From today (8 January 2018), victims of domestic violence will get more support in taking abusive former partners to court. Changes to evidence requirements in private family law disputes have come into effect. There will no longer be a time limit on abuse evidence, which previously stood at five years. Additionally, the range of documents accepted......

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Divorcing parents who poison children against their former partner could lose custody

The demonising of a parent, usually by the one with whom the child lives, has long been recognised as damaging’. Divorcing parents could lose custody or be denied contact with their children if they attempt to poison them against their former partner, under the rules of a new pilot scheme. The “groundbreaking” initiative, being trialled by......

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Property predictions: What will happen to house prices in 2018?

It looked set to dominate another year in the property market, but ‘Brexit’ was overtaken in the 11th hour as the buzzword of 2017 by ‘Bitcoin’. In September, lingerie millionaire Baroness Mone launched 150 flats in Dubai to the market for a starting price of just £100,000, then equal to 30 bitcoins. The general public later followed suit (49-year-old Sean Atkinson listed......

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Regulator calls for better scrutiny of drug testing in family courts

The government’s forensic regulator has called for fresh scrutiny of drug and alcohol testing carried out for the family courts, after a scandal at a Manchester laboratory raised doubts about the quality of evidence used in thousands of child protection proceedings. Gillian Tully told the Guardian she had raised concerns about the lack of oversight of......

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New Stamp Duty Land Tax Rules For First Time Buyers

You must pay Stamp Duty Land Tax (SDLT) if you buy a property or land over a certain price in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. The current SDLT threshold is £125,000 for residential properties and £150,000 for non-residential land and properties. There are different rules if you’re buying your first home. You get a discount (relief) that......

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Divorcing parents who poison children against their former partner could lose custody

Divorcing parents could lose custody or be denied contact with their children if they attempt to poison them against their former partner, under the rules of a new pilot scheme. The “groundbreaking” initiative, being trialled by the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass), is designed to tackle the problem officially known as “parental......

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Court overturns daughter’s win over estranged mother’s will

The supreme court has overturned a decision to increase the sum of money left to a woman by her estranged mother, who left her entire £500,000 estate to three animal charities. The protracted dispute over Melita Jackson’s will has made its way through the English courts since her death, at 70, in 2004. The final......

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Conveyancing process explained: For Buyers

Conveyancing is the process of legally transferring home ownership from you, the seller, to the buyer. It starts from making an offer and finishes when the seller hands over the keys to the buyer. Understanding it will help ensure you don’t suffer any nasty surprises. This leaflet provides a brief understanding of a transaction and......

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Brexit: Boris Johnson says EU citizens’ rights will be protected ‘whatever happens’

Boris Johnson has unilaterally declared to EU citizens living in the UK that “your rights will be protected whatever happens” after Brexit. Speaking at an evening reception last Tuesday, the foreign secretary gave a much more concrete guarantee than the prime minister, who has held off promising to continue EU citizens’ rights until those of UK......

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