Call for Court of Appeal to consider media reporting of divorce cases

Comments by a senior Judge could have implications for couples involved in high-value divorce settlements, Carter Lemon Camerons’ divorce partner Chris Corney has said.

Mr Justice Moor has said that couples who have details about their private lives and finances widely publicised in the media during family court proceedings may have grounds for a legal challenge.

The Judge suggested that the time may have come for the Court of Appeal to consider the issue of how much information should be placed in the public domain.

He said that such a debate may be “overdue” as it becomes increasingly apparent that there is a split in the highest ranks of the judiciary.

Some Judges have argued that divorce proceedings are intrinsically private affairs and there should be strict controls on the details that newspapers and other media outlets are allowed to report.

Mr Justice Mostyn is among those who has voiced discomfort at the way certain cases have been covered.

“Reporting how a case is conducted, and what legal points are raised, in an abstract way is one thing, laying bare the intimate details of the parties’ private lives is altogether another,” he said recently.

But this view goes against previous comments by Sir James Munby, president of the family division, which have set out the case for increased transparency.

At Carter Lemon Camerons we understand that the breakdown of a relationship is never easy, and that trying to get to grips with the legal formalities while dealing with complex emotions can be confusing and upsetting.