Spring Budget money for Family Courts welcome – “every little bit helps” – but general consensus is that this is nowhere near enough to address the extent of the issues

March 12, 2024

Like most family lawyers, the team at Bates Wells & Braithwaite in Ipswich welcomed the Chancellor’s recognition in last week’s budget that the current justice system needed to be “fit for the modern era” and as Jeremy Hunt stressed “too many legal cases, particularly in family law, should never go to court,” and  that “it would cost us less if they didn’t.”

The £170m fund for non-court resolution, is aimed at reducing re-offending and digitising the court process. With relevance to family law was the inclusion of £55m for the family courts to offer online targeted guidance and earlier legal advice, shortening wait times and supporting families through non-court dispute resolution.

Bates Wells & Braithwaite Managing Partner and Head of Family Denise Head commented: “We could go with “every little bit helps” but I tend to agree with Law Society president Nick Emmerson warning that although “small amounts of money to the family court system for early advice are welcome, … it shows the government isn’t facing up to the challenges plaguing the justice system,” and significant investment is desperately needed in staff, judges, legal professionals and court buildings.”

Contact us