For updates to the Freedom of Information request referred to in this blog post see here and here. The Ministry of Justice (MoJ) has confirmed that regions are to be responsible for communicating changes to regional users prior to the implementation of divorce centres and that separate divorce centres for London and the South East were considered, but a single centre covering both regions was considered to be the most cost effective option. The MoJ has confirmed that Bury St Edmunds will be the venue for the London and South East divorce centre. HMCTS is to ensure that arrangements are in place for any urgent applications to receive immediate and appropriate attention, if it is not possible for an applicant to make an application at their designated divorce centre. Guidance on urgent applications is to be made available to all courts in due course. Further information regarding the MoJ plans has also been made available via Resolution here together with examples of regional communications.

Maidenhead probably doesn't feature very highly in Italian travel guides to the UK. Don't get me wrong, it's a nice place within a very pleasant riverside setting. The town didn't ask to get into the family law reports, or indeed the wider media generally. When it did it was not for the best of reasons.

Nevertheless, this part of the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead managed to feature in the judgment of the President of the Family Division, Sir James Munby's recent judgment in Rapsidara v Colladon (Irregular Divorces) [2014] EWFC 35. That case concerned 180 petitions of Italian nationals issued in 137 different courts in England & Wales.179 of the 180 divorcing couples had falsely claimed that one of them lived at an address in Maidenhead.

Munby P was so con

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About the author:
Tony Roe is a solicitor and family law arbitrator at Tony Roe Solicitors, Berkshire