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Key changes proposed under the Domestic Violence Bill 2015

The aim of the Domestic Violence Bill 2015 is to address gaps in the current legislation, and so increase the level of protection needed by victims, including threats posed by electronic or online communication.  The main changes can be summarised as follows: The new legislation extends the scope of a Barring Order to cover electronic communication, which includes text, email, or social media. It prevents a Respondent from “following or …Read More

There can NEVER be too much scrutiny in childcare cases

Gordon Jeyes, the head of Tusla (Child and Family Agency) has been in the media recently, expressing concern about how courts handle childcare cases, and the level of scrutiny involved.  I agree with him to this extent only: that in terms of child care cases (applications to have children removed from their homes into the care of the CFA), there is a need for more cohesive policies of practice across …Read More

Landmark judgement in civil abuse case creates new law

The High Court has declared a new civil law in long-term abuse cases.  In a ruling issued this morning (21st May), Mr Justice Michael White has recognised that the long-term control and manipulation that an abuser exerts over a victim which facilitates abuse is in itself a civil offence. Cormac Walsh, from Arklow, who took the case said that recognising the concept of a ‘continuum of oppression’ helps create a …Read More

First Communion and Confirmation for divorced parents: a how-to guide

Family occasions can be fraught with difficulties during or after a relationship breakdown. But when your children are involved – and particularly when they are centre stage – the potential for serious tensions shoots right up.  Our advice is to take it step-by-step…follow these tips to help you through:   1.            Put your child and their wishes first. The most important thing is that your child has an enjoyable day, …Read More

Facebook Do’s and Don’ts during Divorce :

Your Facebook etiquette is probably the last thing on your mind if your relationship and your family is facing a break-up….but it could have a serious impact on the outcome if you aren’t careful.  You may think of your Facebook or Twitter primarily as a way of talking to and keeping in touch with friends.  Don’t forget that what we post may be totally public, and that it can affect …Read More

5 ways to survive your divorce

There is no easy way through Separation or Divorce but with a little thought and planning, you can make things a little easier. Here are 5 ways to help you through: Stay out of court! If at all possible, try to keep your separation or divorce proceedings out of the courtroom by exploring all the alternatives such as mediation or collaborative family law. It costs more to go to court, …Read More

Legal position of Same Sex Couples & their children in Ireland today:

Although there is no legal right to marry, couples can register a Civil Partnership under the Civil Partnership and Certain Rights of Co-Habitants Act 2010, which came into force in January 2011….a rather large title for a fairly straight forward Act. A Civil Partnership is legally very similar to marriage, and the 2010 Act reflects this in terms of the financial, property and pension rights which it gives. However, the …Read More

3 ways to make Christmas easier for separated families:

Christmas is a hectic time of year for any parents, but it can carry extra stresses and strains for parents who are separated or divorced.  Despite the challenges involved, there are steps you can take to make things a little easier: 1.            Keep Children Top of the Agenda:  it’s their time. Where possible they should have contact with both parents and share the experience of Christmas period with both Mum …Read More

Divorce Considerations for the Parents of a Special Needs Child

Divorce or separation can be a harrowing prospect for any parent, but when you are the parents of a special needs child it can pose an even greater challenge: It can be harder to explain to your child what is happening and to offer reassurances about the future. You may need professional input and support Financially, there is less money to go around after separation or divorce.  This can make it …Read More

Dividing assets on divorce: does Equitable Mean Equal?

In deciding separation/relationship breakdown issues, there is an obligation upon every court to ensure that there is an “equitable division” of all assets between the parties. Unfortunately people can interpret this as meaning “equal division,” and this is not always the case….. Equitable does not mean equal. It is reasonable to assume that if you are a couple who are both independent and capable of earning in your own right, …Read More