Do we need a Royal Commission for penal policy?


By Lyndon Harris Recently Louis Blom-Cooper QC and Professor Sean McConville (QMUL) proposed that the next government set up a royal commission on prison policy. Calling the present system “dangerously dysfunctional”, a report published on 18 November  notes that, after almost 50 years since the last royal commission on the penal system – it having […]

Human rights – have they gone too far?

Human Rights Act

By Paul Caddy Type the words “have human rights …” into Google and it automatically suggests “… gone too far[?]”. This isn’t a surprise: for many people human rights, as set out in the Human Rights Act 1998, are a byword for reckless absurdity. It is a villains’ charter which cares not a jot for […]

Disproportionate costs in family proceedings will be criticised

Family Costs

Family lawyers need to keep costs proportionate warned Mostyn J in his recent decision in J v J. He was highly critical of the parties’ conduct, suggesting the parties’ representatives behaved as if the FPR did not apply to them. The case serves as a stark reminder that billing practices in family cases will be […]

Counter-Terrorism Bill – the proposals in a nutshell


By Dan Bunting Whatever else can be said about the war on terrorism, it has been hugely influential in the shaping of the law (statutory, common law and European). The latest proposal to come from the Coalition is a “Temporary Exclusion Order”, announced in the press in September. It was “re-booted” in November and we […]

Cohabiting pitfalls: is it time the law caught up?

House Split

By Collette Bailey The law on relationship breakdown differs between couples who are cohabiting and married couples. Under English Law the concept of common-law wife/husband does not exist. If an unmarried couple live together in a property owned by both of them, they need to be careful to express at the outset what they intend […]