Family Law Hub

Jurisdiction

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  • The children had repeatedly told their guardian, and through her the court, that they wanted to continue living with their mother in England. The Spanish court had ordered that they live with their father in Spain. Russell J DBE found that on any objective and neutral analysis both children were habitually resident in England. They were settled here and were fully integrated into their schools and social environment. There was no significant evidence contrary to such a finding, and jurisdiction was with and in this court. The mother's appeal against enforcement of the Spanish order was allowed. The children would live with her, and would have contact with the father, subject to him providing written permission for the renewal of the children's passports, and documentary evidence that the Spanish order had been discharged and all criminal complaints in Spain against the mother had been dropped. Judgment, 06/02/2020, free
  • The father appealed against the registration of an order made in Poland, which had required him to pay £300 a month maintenance. He had paid this amount up until the CMS had made a new determination. An application to enforce the original order had been made to the Polish courts, who declined jurisdiction. HHJ Moradifar found that by 2012 jurisdiction in relation to the child maintenance was in England and thus the CMS was the competent authority. The father's application against registration of the Polish order was allowed. Judgment, 27/01/2020, free
  • The parents were British and Jordanian nationals, who married in Jordan in 2010 and moved to England in 2011. The mother applied for a declaration that their six-year-old son was habitually resident here, and for an order prohibiting the father from removing the boy from the care of the mother or from this jurisdiction, and from making further applications regarding the child in Jordan. The father argued that the Kingdom of Jordan was the appropriate legal forum for determination of the welfare issues. MacDonald J was wholly satisfied that the child was habitually resident in the jurisdiction of England and Wales, where he had been born and had lived for all but sixteen months. It was therefore the natural and appropriate forum for the welfare issues to be determined. Judgment, 03/01/2020, free
  • The husband had been ordered to pay the former wife a lump sum of £20m in full and final settlement of her claims. Eleven years later, not a penny had been paid. A without notice order had been made appointing receivers of shares in a Spanish company, of which the husband had been found to be the beneficial owner. This receivership order was set aside following an application by other parties, and the wife now appealed against the set-aside order. Baker LJ decided that the judge had been wrong to set it aside on the mere assertion by the other parties that they were the owners of relevant shares. A third party could not expect to receive the protection of the court if it wasn't prepared for the rights it claimed to be scrutinised. Arguments on limitation, jurisdiction and estoppel also failed. Moylan LJ and Longmore LJ agreed, and the receivership order was restored, the latter adding that the application to set aside the receivership order had been misconceived from the start. Judgment, 23/12/2019, free
  • An appeal from the refusal of an anti-suit injunction with regard to proceedings in New Zealand, following the end of a six-year romantic relationship. Gray argued that Article 4(1) of the Judgments Regulation afforded rights to both parties, to her the right to be sued in and only in England, and to her former partner the right to sue her in and only in England. Patten LJ, Hickinbottom LJ and Peter Jackson LJ acknowledged that as a possible interpretation, but it was not one that they would wish to adopt in the present case unless required to do so. The anti-suit jurisdiction was exercised where appropriate to avoid injustice, but it was inevitably an interference with the process of the foreign court and must be exercised with caution. The appeal proceedings were stayed and the Court of Justice would be requested to give a preliminary ruling pursuant to Article 267 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. Judgment, 18/12/2019, free

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