Nearly 30 local Family Lawyers recently attended the first meeting of
the Peterborough Family Law Group at Broadway based Hegarty & Co
The meeting had been organised by
Family Solicitor Jane Tatlock of Hegarty & Co Solicitors. Jane
said "I wanted to set up the Family Law Group to help improve
communication with the local Courts and as a forum for local family
lawyers to discuss ideas and problems"
The main speaker at the meeting was
Barrister, Lindsay Davies from Fenners Chambers who with fellow
Barrister, Liam Gribbin discussed the topical Lambert Divorce case.
Lindsay, who is also a Recorder explained that the case was ground
breaking in so far as Lord Justice Thorpe now makes it clear that it
is unacceptable to place more weight on the husbands contribution as
breadwinner than the wife's contribution as homemaker. This case,
unlike the majority of divorces which take place in Britain every
year, involved assets totalling £20.2 million.
The case has led to an increasing
public perception that settlements arising out of all divorce cases
will be resolved by an equal division of the assets of the marriage.
If this were true, it would make the job of lawyers and decisions of
Judges a great deal easier. However, Miss Davies commented that the
Court of Appeal who considered the Lambert case made it clear that the
decision in Lambert does not change the fact that each and every
divorce case will be decided on its own merits and in line with the
circumstances surrounding that particular case. Thus, in a lot of
cases the parent with care of the children, normally the wife, will
potentially receive more than 50% of the total assets in order to
ensure that she and the children of that marriage are adequately
Also present were Margaret Pearce from
Metcalfe Copeman and Pettefar and Duane Plant from Dawbarns Pearson
who are Chairperson and Secretary of the West Norfolk and Fenland
Family Law Practitioners Group respectively. Duane talked about the
advantages of setting up such a group and gave advice on running a
Family Law Group.
At the meeting were family lawyers
from many local firms including, Buckles, Hunt & Coombs, Metcalfe
Copeman and Pettefar, Waller Needham and Green, Roger Terrell & Co
, Hannah & Co and Dawbarns Pearson. Janet Thompson was also
present from the Solicitors Chambers.
Jane concluded, "The meeting was
very beneficial to those who attended and I hope the group will become
established as a valuable resource for all local family lawyers"