Will My Hearing Still Take Place?
On the 23 March 2020, the Prime Minister made an announcement which placed the UK on Lockdown. But what if you have a hearing? Where does this leave you? Do you still need to go to court?
The President of the Family Division issued guidance on all court hearings. The guidance is to keep the courts running to keep cases progressing but not open to the public to minimise the risk to the public of this virus spreading further.
All Family Court hearings have now been listed to take place remotely using telephone/video conferencing or via email. If you have a hearing listed, you may no longer be required to attend the hearing. If you do not have a solicitor, please contact the court where your hearing is listed and they will advise you of how your hearing will take place. If you have a solicitor, they will be making arrangements with the court and other parties for the hearing to go ahead and will notify you whether or not you have to attend the hearing.
Hearings may already be listed for a certain time and date but this may change dependant on the availability of the technology used to manage remote hearings so it is advised that you check with the court prior to your hearing that it is still going ahead as planned.
In order for the hearing to go ahead, you will need to provide the court with your up to date contact details. If you have a solicitor, the solicitor will do this for you if you are required to attend the hearing, if not then the solicitor themselves or a barrister will be instructed to act on your behalf at the hearing.
This is only temporary, whilst COVID-19 is still a risk to the country. The President of the Family Division will announce when these measures have been lifted.
If you would like further information or have any queries, please contact our Family Law team on 02392 483322 for an initial free chat about your options.
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