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The Family Law Language Project Nominated in 2022 Family Law Awards

The Family Law Language Project has been shortlisted for the Community Commentator award in this year’s Family Law Awards. The project seeks to make family law easier to understand for clients and their families, the family law community, the media and the general public.

Launched in November 2021, the project is spearheaded by 8 leading family law solicitors, including Sarah Harding, Partner in our Family Law team.

Since its conception, Sarah and the team have worked hard to promote the project through a mix of events, blogs and media interviews. Their dedication to making family law easier to understand has been recognised by their peers, with the project now shortlisted for the Community Commentator award in this year’s Family Law Awards.

Sarah commented: “Language often used in family law is outdated, and difficult to understand – for example references to “custody” and “FHDRA” – the first of which is often used by clients but has no meaning in law anymore, and the second of which is an abbreviation for a hearing which means nothing to most clients. Such terms can cause confusion and added stress for anyone not experienced with the process, particularly those who need to act in person.

“In addition to this, family law is moving towards a conciliatory system, where possible, and so it follows therefore, that the language we use should ensure that it is easily understandable, less intimidating and removes conflict. We hope that the project will highlight outdated, offensive and hostile terms that are used and will encourage the use of more accessible language, which focusses on the welfare of children and the family involved”.

The project’s steering committee is led by Emma Nash, a partner at Fletcher Day. The other committee members are: Sarah Harding, a partner at London firm Hodge Jones & Allen; Gemma Hope, a director at London firm Family Law Partners; Ashley McCann, an associate at Scottish firm Gillespie Mcandrew; James Evans of Our Family Wizard; Yuliya Osudina, Associate at Kingsley Napley; Belinda Moseley at Hugh James and fellow family lawyer Ashleigh Spencer.

The Family Law Awards is a prestigious event, with 2021’s ceremony attended by over 700 guests from across the legal sphere. The Community Commentator award is one of two awards that are voted for by the family law community and general public. To help raise awareness of the project and ensure that the Family Law Language Project can succeed in their aim to make family law accessible to everyone, you can vote for them to win the Community Commentator award at the link below:

Sarah Harding specialises in all aspects of family law, with a particular emphasis on complex divorce and financial cases. She is a member of Resolution, an organisation of lawyers committed to taking a constructive approach to family law.

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