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Cafcass reports fall of 4% in new private law cases in December

New private law cases in 2014 fall by 25%

In December 2014, Cafcass received a total of 2,735 new private law cases.  This is a 4% decrease on December 2013 levels.

Throughout 2014 there were 35,896 new private law cases. This compares with 47,898 in 2013, representing a fall of 25%.

Resolution spokesperson Simon Bethel, who leads Resolution's work on child law policy, comments:

"The Cafcass figures from April 2014 onwards show a month-on-month reduction in applications issued. This coincides with the introduction of compulsory Mediation Information and Assessment Meetings (MIAMs) on 22 April 2014. This could mean one of two things. First, either the cost or inconvenience associated with this extra hurdle is putting people off the application process altogether, leading to potentially loss of contact between children and non-resident parents. Or, on a more positive note, it could mean that more cases are being kept out of court as they have been successfully resolved through mediation. With the latest MoJ statistics showing that mediation is on the increase one must hope this is a positive development. We're working with Resolution's family lawyers and mediators to gather data on mediation numbers and the impact of MIAMs to determine whether the Government's push to promote out of court dispute resolution for family matters is beginning to have an impact."

The full statistics are here.