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Media access and reporting in Family Courts
The President of the Family Division, the Judicial College and the Society of Editors have issued a joint publication setting out the current state of the law with regard to the reporting of cases in family courts.
The publication recognises the complexity of the issues surrounding the reporting of family law cases. There is a tension between concerns about “secret justice” and legitimate expectations of privacy and confidentiality for the family. Both standpoints are valid, and the question is whether they are irreconcilable.
The document was drafted by two members of the bar, Adam Wolanski and Kate Wilson. Its publication will be of use as the debate on increased transparency and public confidence in the family courts moves forward. It will serve to inform future consideration of this difficult and sensitive area, including the questions of access to and reporting of proceedings by the media, whilst maintaining the privacy of the families involved.
The publication is intended to be of practical use to journalists, judges and practitioners alike.
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