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Let’s be realistic

David Hodson OBE asks if it’s time for a John Cornwell-style code of practice for lawyers’ wellbeing in family justice

5 September 2019

The Central Family Court has produced a working draft guidance written by His Honour Judge Robin Tolson QC which has attracted particular attention; but it does contain controversial suggestions.

Some have poured scorn upon it. Some have supported the intentions behind it. Parts of it are possibly unrealistic.

Things have to change but change can only occur if it encompasses everyone including the court service, judges, solicitors and barristers.

Change is impossible unless all parts work together.

The present way of working in family justice cannot continue. It’s not serving the interests of the users and it is not in keeping with present expectations of working patterns.

It may have worked okay – just ‘okay’ with undoubtedly adverse consequences – for some of us in the 1980s and 1990s.

But it is rightly being rejected by millennials and others who are insistent on a better work/life balance, or si...

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