If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

The Domestic Abuse Act 2021: a new law offering greater protection for victims


LGFL's inside track on the Domestic Abuse Act 2021, and why this new legislation is so important.



All change? Holiday child arrangements and COVID-19  [updated May 2021]


If you're planning a holiday abroad this year with your children, as a divorced or separated parent with shared parental responsibility, you will require your ex-partner's permission. 

If your plans change due to covid-19 or similar, then you'll need to revise any child arrangement agreement, which gives their permission. 

Here's how a formal letter from a family lawyer can make the whole process of agreeing who gets the kids when during the holidays a whole lot easier.  





From our social media:

Brad Pitt awarded joint custody of children with Angelina Jolie

"Ms Jolie filed for divorce in 2016 and the pair have since been engaged in a custody battle largely shielded from public view." 


Domestic abuse: 'Girls shouldn't live in fear of dad killing mum'

Heartbreaking story highlighting the issues BAME women face in abuse cases.


£100m divorce award: judge rebuffs media pleas to publish judgment

Billionaire newspaper owner applied to court to keep details out of public domain.


Law and disorder: the Secret Judge takes us inside Britain’s overstretched courts during the pandemic

"Secret Judge reveals how, via the blessings and burdens of technology, justice has prevailed"


Bill Gates still wearing wedding ring in first major public appearance since filing for divorce

Some eagled eyed reporter.  However, the marriage isn't officially over until Bill & Melinda legally divorced. So if he want to still wear his wedding ring, why not? 




China divorces drop 70% after controversial ‘cooling off’ law

Interesting Chinese stats, however as the article states:

"The announcement of the cooling-off period sparked anger at the time, especially among women, and drew suggestions from young people that they were now more likely to avoid marriage altogether."


Women being arrested and criminalised after reporting violence and abuse, say MPs

Support is what these women need.

‘There is more to do to ensure that women are given the support they need without being criminalised,’ says Labour MP


Barristers to share Gray’s Inn with 300 kids as new primary school gets go-ahead

Barristers in the making?


Tech playing growing role in UK domestic abuse cases, experts say

“As our lives are lived ever more through our computers and phones, it’s crucial that women experiencing abuse are able to use their technology safely, without fear of being monitored, controlled and harassed.”

Well said.


What you need to remember about Bill and Melinda Gates’ divorce settlement

"What this comes down to is how we view marriage. …A marriage is not just a romantic relationship: it is an economic partnership."


Melinda Gates could become world’s second-richest woman

Hopefully their charitable company will not feel the break up.


The golden rules of an amicable divorce – as Bill and Melinda Gates split

It doesn't have to messy say the Gates.


Domestic Abuse Act prompts legal aid plea

Law Society president, Stephanie Boyce called for "legal aid to be reintroduced for early advice in all family cases to ensure victims of abuse are identified at an early stage and helped to get access to justice to protect them and their children."


The biggest challenge of divorce? The kids’ school clothes are always at the wrong house

"There is absolutely no way of getting ahead of it, because children lose everything, all the time; or insulating yourself against it: you feel bad, because you’re right to feel bad, because it’s your fault."

An interestingly honest read.


My husband was disinherited for marrying me

Gosh what a family story, disinheritance, evictions and never meeting your grandchild. 

If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

Supporting LGBT+ survivors of domestic abuse during the Covid-19 pandemic: our conference report

Hand with LGBT sign


At LGFL, we feel it is our responsibility to constantly educate ourselves so that we are advising in an inclusive fashion. So, one of our team attended the online Galop conference on "Supporting LGBT+ survivors of domestic abuse during the Covid-19 pandemic." Here are the key learning points we gained to carry forward into our working practices here at LGFL.


Who gets the dog - Your in depth guide to pets and divorce [updated April 2021]


In the UK, 5.7 million new pets were bought between March and September 2020. So, we've updated our popular blog "Who gets the dog?" with new information, fresh insights into custody of your family pets after you divorce.




The son, the mother - and the importance of full financial disclosure


The cautionary tale of an oligarch, his wife and his son, showing how avoiding full and frank disclosure of all your assets for your divorce financial settlement can land you (back) in court.





From our social media:

Kris Jenner shared the best divorce advice everyone can learn from

"I think the most important thing I learned through my experience, both of my experiences, is that the kids come first,"

Well said Kris


Domestic Abuse protocol from Resolution

The DFJ's of London and the South-East have agreed a Domestic Abuse protocol regarding the issuing of applications for Family Law Act orders.


Use of ‘stalkerware’ apps that allow abusers to spy on partners soar by 93% in pandemic

It seems too easy for some to obtain these apps.


6 things first-time buyers need to consider

Buying with a partner a ‘co-habitation’ or ‘living together’ agreement can help.

See a lawyer to help get the agreement drawn up.


Talking Family Law – the Resolution Podcast

Have you listened to Resolution - first for family law new podcast covering all things family law.




First woman barrister gets a plaque

Great to see recognition finally.


Two Doughty Street junior barristers launch hijabs for court

A great idea to help!


The new Victim’s code of practice

Simple explanation of the rights of the victim in court.


Victims going to court entitled not to see defendant

Victims of alleged crimes attending court will have right not to see defendant before or after case under new code that comes into force today.


Government announces launch of new Help to Buy scheme

A new Help to Buy scheme starts today, 1 April 2021, and will run to March 2023. Just as before, the government will lend new homebuyers up to 20% of the cost of a newly built home, and up to 40% in London. However, the new scheme is restricted to first-time buyers only, with regional property price caps.


Johnny Depp refused permission to appeal libel ruling

"None of the criticisms levelled at the judgment had a real prospect of success."


How to redecorate after divorce - author Rosie Green shares her tips for getting it right

A little help for life after divorce.


Two women lead Law Society for first time

Let's hear it for the girls!


If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

When coercive control never ends: post-separation and the new Domestic Abuse Bill


“Ongoing, indefinite power to destroy our lives”. Read Rita's new article on post-separation abuse, and why it is an important amendment to the Domestic Abuse Bill.


Sunak, stamp duty and summer schools; the Budget 2021 and family law

budet 2021 and family law


In a special "Budget blog", we explore how Rishi Sunak's 2021 Budget may impact on separated parents, single parents and couples in the midst of divorce.




Going green: an unexpected benefit of the pandemic

green leaves in office bag and pens


Less paper shredded, less energy used, and lower emissions: unexpected benefits from our first year of full remote working for our team. Discover more in our latest LGFL article.



Without Prejudice: what it means and when to use it

woman scratching head understading the meaning of without prejudice


Confused about Without Prejudice and “Without Prejudice save as to costs”? LGFL Rita Gupta explains why taking legal advice is important before using either phrase on your family law case correspondence.





From our social media:

7 Ways to Help Your Teenager Cope With Your Divorce

Divorce can be difficult for young people. This article has some ideas to help.


Man ordered to pay his wife £5,400 for doing the housework

Certainly a step forward in Chinese divorce law.


Quarter of parents who suffered domestic abuse say it took place during pregnancy

This is a very sobering statistic.


Most judges do not feel valued by government - survey

So, the question is how to improve their sense of value to government and the media in general?


5 tips for co-parenting amicably after divorce or separation

While the arrangement may appear straightforward if former partners remain on good terms, sharing parenting of children with an ex can present many challenging issues to work through - from anxieties to disagreements, loneliness and a lack of support.




Untying the knot: how to have a ‘good’ divorce

“It’s hard at the beginning – it’s much easier to just go into your own camp and be cross with the other person. But actually, if you look at it as both of you trying to extricate yourselves fairly, then you focus on the solution rather than the problem."


Religious divorce refusal can now be recognised as a criminal offence

A husband who refuses a 'get' can now be viewed as exerting controlling and coercive behaviour, listed as a criminal offence under the Serious Crime Act.


Lisa Marie Presley asks judge to hand her single status in long-running divorce battle

Lengthy divorce takes it toll: Lisa Marie Presley has urged the judge overseeing her ongoing divorce and custody battle to end the legal spat so she can get on with her life.


Multimillionaire sells classic Bentley collection to pay for divorce

I wonder how many tears the collector wept over this!


Adele finalises divorce with joint custody of son

Co-parenting from Adele: "committed to raising their son together lovingly"


Adele’s weight loss secrets revealed: How the singer shed seven stone and got a ‘new lease of life’

They only just recently finalised the details of the divorce after a two-year battle over finances and reportedly used a "mediator" to split her £140m fortune.


Calls to domestic abuse helpline in England up by 60% over past year

Coercive control:
"Across the whole of 2020, 81% described being controlled by their partner"



It’s a common misconception that domestic abuse ends when the victim and abuser are physically separated and live in separate homes. The belief that ending the relationship is the ultimate end to abuse is misguided. There is still a real problem of post-separation abuse, experienced by far too many victims of domestic violence, male or female. The offence of post-separation abuse has just been included as an amendment to the new Domestic Abuse Bill. LGFL Managing Director Rita Gupta explains why the inclusion is so important, both for ex-partners and their children.

At its core, post-separation abuse is about retaining power. The abuser continues to exert coercive control over their ex-partner in almost any way possible, whether through physical means such as violence, threats, intimidation, stalking, or via remote monitoring, emotional abuse and manipulation. Unchecked, it can continue for years, blighting the lives of victims and their families.

As family law practitioners, we regularly witness ongoing abuse after separation, in women and in men. Indeed, in my own experience, there is just as much ongoing abuse after separation, often from women. This can involve issues around the children, as by that point the children may be the only tie the parties still have together. Many clients find themselves post-separation with the same issues, the same ongoing disputes and obstacles that cause them extreme anxiety and distress. This continuation of abuse also has a devastating impact on the children.


Post-separation abuse and the Domestic Violence Bill

Previously, post-separation abuse or coercive control had not been included in the draft Domestic Violence Bill, and limited legislation to those who were still living together. The new amendment removes the requirement for abusers and victims to be living together for an offence to take place. This will be a great relief for victims trying to extract themselves from coercive controlling partners, and prevent what one survivor described as their ex-partner’s

“Ongoing, indefinite power to destroy our lives”.


The new Controlling and Coercive amendment extends the offence of controlling or coercive behaviour to include post-separation abuse where ex-partners no longer live in the same house. It also now covers family members who no longer live together with their abuser, such as children. The new amendment, championed by Baroness Lister in the House of Lords, has been widely welcomed by ministers and campaigners alike:

“Controlling or coercive behaviour is an insidious form of domestic abuse that can destroy lives. I am pleased that the offence is being extended so we can protect more victims and send a clear message to perpetrators.”

Safeguarding Minister Victoria Atkins


“We’re absolutely delighted the government is criminalising post-separation abuse via an amendment to the Domestic Abuse Bill. By doing so, victims will receive the recognition they need and deserve. Post-separation abuse is a devastating form of coercive control and the economic abuse elements of this can continue for decades. Legislation is the first essential step on the path to eradicating it and preventing future homicides.”

Dr Nicola Sharp-Jeffs OBE, Founder & CEO, Surviving Economic Abuse.


For the latest details on the progress of the Domestic Abuse Bill, see the parliament website.


Post-separation economic abuse

Post-separation abuse often involves economic abuse (financial manipulation) where the perpetrator continues to control and influence their ex-partner through financial means, such as running up debt, denying access to funds, or not paying Child Maintenance despite being able to.

This can also exist in more subtle forms, such as:

  • Refusing to pay for extra costs for the children
  • Demanding an unrealistic level of financial support and then using the children in the process

I often see parents struggling to fund all of the children’s activities, extra clothing and school uniform costs, with one parent thinking the child maintenance would cover everything. Similarly, I often see one parent feeling they have to over compensate and pay inflated financial support to ensure they are perceived to be a good parent. This ongoing manipulation causes extreme harm on both the short and long term.

The charity Surviving Economic Abuse (SEA) says that one in four women who escape from domestic abuse in their home then suffer ongoing economic abuse after their relationship has ended. As the charity explains:

“Economic abuse generally consists of an abuser exercising control over the survivor, through denying access to economic resources such as money, and sabotaging economic resources or exploiting them, so as to create economic instability and prevent a survivor from rebuilding their life safely and independently.”


In an article for Grazia magazine the CEO of Surviving Economic Abuse charity expands on this, explaining how victims can be paying off coerced debt for years. Coerced debt results from an abusive partner forcing the victim to take out loans, mortgages and credit cards in their own name, saddling them with debt even after separation. The charity calculates that economic abuse victims owe around £23.5 million per annum, with each repayment a painful reminder of their years of abuse.

Post-separation abuse against men

These issues equally apply to male victims, who can feel financially pressured and manipulated by unreasonable demands. Their ex-partner may also seek to break the bond between them and their children through parental alienation, which can have serious long-term implications.

Whilst welcoming the new amendment, Mark Brooks, Chair of Mankind Initiative, is particularly concerned about parental alienation and abuse through the court system. He considers that deliberate action can create unnecessarily alienating when no risks issues exist. This is the main concern for men who have gone through domestic abuse at home, and then further financial abuse through having to enforce court orders. Financial and economic manipulation becomes an attack on their masculinity and implies that they are not good providers.

Another ongoing form of post-separation abuse Mankind is concerned about is social media misuse, where impersonation and social media negative posting is carried out by ex female partners.


Post-separation abuse and children

The use of coercive control isn’t just confined to the ex-partner. A study in Child Abuse Review explains how perpetrators of domestic abuse can continue to exert coercive control over their children long after separation. Based on the experiences of children with fathers or father-figures imposing coercive control, a research team identified three main types of experiences:

  1. Dangerous fathering that was frightening
  2. ‘Admirable’ fathering that appeared caring to outsiders
  3. Omnipresent fathering that constrained the lives of their children resulting in a “fearful mental and emotional state”


The team’s key message was that:

“Children and young people can be direct victims/survivors of coercive control and they can experience it in much the same ways as adults do – feeling confused and afraid, living constrained lives, and being entrapped and harmed by the perpetrator. Coercive control can harm children and young people emotionally/psychologically, physically, socially and educationally.”


Post-separation abuse and the courts

Another aspect of post-relationship coercive control is that perpetrators may try to manipulate the court system to “punish” their ex-partner, as Yorkshire domestic abuse charity IDAS explains:

“This may involve repeated applications to court for contact arrangements or enforcement of orders, however they may show little interest in maintaining contact once orders have been made or even mistreat or endanger the children during court ordered contact.”

The Government is also suggesting a further amendment that will give clarification on the use of ‘barring orders’ in the family courts. The aim is to stop abusive ex-partners from “repeatedly dragging their victims back to court” as a form of ongoing abuse.

Again, it’s important to remember these issues apply equally to male and female victims of post-separation abuse. At LGFL, we regularly act for a number of male victims, and we always try and take a balanced approach.


Post-separation abuse; act now

If you have separated from your abusive ex-partner but are still suffering from post-separation abuse of any kind, now is the time to act. You can call us for an initial consultation with 30 minutes included free to discuss your situation. We can and will help you with any coercive control scenario. See our pages on:

If you are a victim of any form of domestic abuse, emotional abuse or coercive control, please contact us at LGFL Ltd to arrange an urgent consultation.


If you are in any immediate danger, always call 999 for police assistance.

In December 2014, home secretary Teresa May announced a new domestic abuse offence of “coercive and controlling behaviour” carrying a penalty of a fine and a custodial prison sentence.