Family justice reform

The Family Justice Review, made a number of recommendations for reforming the family justice system, aimed at cutting delay and improving the way the system functions as a whole.
Many of the recommendations of the Family Justice Review are being implemented through the Children and Families Act 2014, with the majority of the family justice provisions in the Act coming into force on 22 April 2014, alongside the launch of the single family court, introduced by the Crime and Courts Act 2013.

Family Procedure Rules and Practice Directions

The Family Procedure Rules will be updated on 22 April 2014 to incorporate changes arising from the creation of the single family court and the implementation of many of the family justice provisions in the Children and Families Act 2014.

To enable practitioners to have access to the amended Family Procedure Rules in advance of them coming into force, a new, consolidated version has been produced which incorporates these changes.  It also includes amendments arising from the Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act 2013, which came into effect on 15 March 2014.

View the new Family Procedure Rules (.ZIP)

Practice Directions with substantive changes:

PD 3A (Family Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings (PDF 0.04mb)

PD 12A (the Public Law Outline) (PDF 0.08mb)

PD 12B (the Child Arrangements Programme) replacing the Private Law Programme (PDF 0.13mb)

PD 12J (Child Arrangements and Contact Order: Domestic Violence and Harm) (PDF 0.06mb)

PD 27A (Bundles) (PDF .0.4mb)

PD 30A (Appeals) (PDF 0.18mb)

PD36A (Transitionals) (PDF 0.06mb)

PD 37A (Applications and Proceedings in Relation to Contempt of Court) (new) (PDF 0.07mb)

Details of the statutory instruments amending the Family Procedure Rules 2010 (PDF 0.01mb)

Information about other secondary legislation which implements the single family court (PDF 0.01mb)

Details of the key changes made by primary and secondary legislation which implements the single Family Court (PDF 0.05mb)

Child Arrangements Programme

The following are the final and approved documents of the Private Law Working Group including the revised Practice Direction 12B which contains the CAP.

The ‘CAP’ applies in private law proceedings where a dispute arises between separated parents and/or families about arrangements concerning children. The CAP will apply to these proceedings from 22 April.


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