A week dominated by Brexit, ‘First Minister vs Prime Minister’ and the fall-out from the first judgments of the CJEU on religious manifestation…
As expected, on Monday the Commons rejected the Lords amendments to the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill, the Lords did not insist on their amendments and the bill passed. So after a total of 70 hours of debate, the EU (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill completed its passage through Parliament and received Royal Assent on Thursday. The BBC reports that the Prime Minister is expected to wait until the end of the month formally to notify the EU of the UK’s intention to leave.
Opposite-sex civil partnerships, RE, funny handshakes – and some of the media still don’t understand the difference between Brussels and Strasbourg…
Opposite-sex civil partnerships? Not yet
Rebecca Steinfeld and Charles Keidan lost their appeal against the Administrative Court’s refusal to review the Government’s policy on the extension of civil partnerships to opposite-sex couples: see Steinfeld & Anor v Secretary of State for Education EWCA Civ 81: we noted the decision here. Continue reading →
Brexit yet again, child abuse, abortion, deposition from Orders – the usual mix…
Brexit yet again
On Friday, the Administrative Court threw out the latest Brexit challenge by a group led by Peter Wilding and Adrian Yalland. They argued that, under the terms of Article 127 of the Agreement on the European Economic Area, Parliament should give separate approval to the UK’s exit from the EEA.
Lloyd-Jones LJ and Lewis J concluded that the Government had not made a decision “as to the mechanism by which the EEA agreement would cease to apply within the UK”. As a result, it was not clear at this stage what issues, if any, would fall within the jurisdiction of the courts. All we have at the moment is press reports: we’ll be interested to see the written judgment.
In J v B (Ultra-Orthodox Judaism: Transgender) EWFC 4, the couple, who were members of the North Manchester Charedi Jewish community, ended their marriage in June 2015 when the father, J, left home to live as a woman. J then had no contact with the children because of the attitude of the Charedi community to transsexuals [3 & 4]. J nevertheless “remained an Orthodox Jew, maintaining a kosher diet to the best of her ability and attending Orthodox synagogue when she could” . Continue reading →
A fairly quiet week for the blog, but certainly not for politics…
On Tuesday, the Prime Minister unveiled her plans for Brexit – or at least her desiderata. We summarised the main points here. To describe reactions as “mixed” is something of an understatement.
Northern Ireland elections
As expected, the power-sharing Executive in Belfast duly collapsed. Minutes after the deadline for a nomination to replace Martin McGuinness as Deputy First Minister had passed, the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, James Brokenshire, announced that elections for Stormont would take place on 2 March. Continue reading →
Three judgments have been published recently about a series of custody proceedings between a separated couple from the ultra-Orthodox Satmar sect: X (Number 1: Religious Differences: Schools) EWFC B230; X (Number 2: Orthodox Schools) EWFC B237; and X (Number 3: Division of Religious Festivals) EWFC B91. Though they do not establish any new legal principle, they are a stark illustration of the difficulties inherent in the work of the Family Courts.
The situation was set out very briefly by HHJ Rowe in X (Number 1). In 2014, The boy, A, was nearly five and the girl, B, was two. Their parents were separated but not divorced.
Possibly the crux of the matter was that, having left the Satmar community, the father had had to contend with the disapproval not only from the mother and her family but also from his own wider family: “Currently he is struggling to rebuild his relationship with his father who lives in Israel. The community now struggles to see the father as Jewish” [No 1: 14]. Continue reading →