From 30th January 2023, the current postion for the media or legal bloggers who attend family court hearings will change in three courts.

Under a pilot scheme introduced by Sir Andrew McFarlane, President of the Family Division, it will no longer be necessary for a journalist or legal blogger to apply for and be granted leave to report or publish information from a family court hearing at Cardiff, Carlisle or Leeds. The pilot will take place over 12 months.

In these three courts, journalists and bloggers who attend will be able to write about the case, subject to a very strict transparency order that will ensure children are not identified.

As reporters including Sanchia Berg of the BBC and Louise Tickle (freelance journalist and Transparency Project member) explain here and here

You can read the new guidance and template Transparency Order here.

As The Transparency Project is especially keen on promoting legal blogging – watch this space! In the meantime for information about legal blogging or to get involved see here.

Information about the Transparency Implementation Group is here, with links to the key documents.

We’ll gather reports of this exciting new initiative as we see them here:

BBC News, 1 December 2022: Family court reporting to be allowed for first time

BBC Radio Four, 2 December 2022: Women’s Hour (16.27-26.13)

Local Government Lawyer, 5 December: Pilot sceme to allow family court reporting for the first time

Morning Star, 2 December: Pilot allowing journalists to report on family court proceedinsg sparks concerns from union

Law Society Gazette, 19 January 2023: Media gets the go-ahead to report family proceedings

We have a small favour to ask! 
The Transparency Project is a registered charity in England & Wales run largely by volunteers who also have full-time jobs. We’re working hard to secure extra funding so that we can keep making family justice clearer for all who use the court and work within it. We’d be really grateful if you were able to help us by making a small one-off (or regular!) donation through our Just Giving page. You can find our page, and further information here
Thanks for reading!

Image courtesy of Sarflondonunc on Flickr – creative commons – thanks.