HARRINGTON STREET PRIVATE FDR

It has become increasingly common in London and Manchester over recent years for the parties in Financial Remedy disputes to choose to arrange for their FDR to be conducted privately.

It has become increasingly common in London and Manchester over recent years for the parties in Financial Remedy disputes to choose to arrange for their FDR to be conducted privately by experienced and specialist Financial Remedy Counsel, sitting as private FDR judges. Not only is this practice approved by the President of the Family Division, it is now actively encouraged by Mr Justice Mostyn J as National Lead Judge of the Financial Remedies Court.

The initial view of the clients is inevitably to query the reasons for incurring the extra expense of jointly instructing Counsel to oversee an FDR, when District Judges come for free.

The benefits to those cautious clients are, however, readily apparent to the Solicitors who choose to take this path:-

  • Instead of waiting for Court availability months after an FDA, an early date can be fixed immediately;
  • Instead of finding out (usually the night before) that the FDR is not in fact listed to be heard by the experienced full-time DJ who was expected and is to be heard by a Deputy with no real experience in this specialist field, the identity of private FDR Counsel is a matter of specific choice;
  • Instead of being informed the day before the FDR by the Court Office that “we haven’t got a Judge”, the private FDR judge is committed to the case;
  • The parties will have the benefit of a dedicated FDR judge for the entire day. Unlike in the time-pressed Court setting, a private FDR judge will not have an afternoon of telephone hearings and private law children disputes to determine.

For those parties who prefer to continue to attend a hearing in person, Harrington Street facilitate conference rooms for both sides (or more if there are intervenors), together with the effective FDR Hearing in our seminar room. Alternatively, arrangements can easily be made for video link access for those who would prefer for their FDR to be conducted remotely, so as to avoid unnecessary travel, whether that is for reasons of time, expense or current public health concerns.

If you are interested in the possibility of arranging a private FDR, please contact either John Kilgallon, Practice Director, on 0151 242 0700 (email: john.kilgallon@7hs.co.uk) or Carolyn Cregeen, Senior Family Clerk, on 0151 242 0701 (email: carolyn.cregeen@7hs.co.uk).

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