June 28th, 2019
Attention was brought to the High Court this week when the court was asked to consider if service of key court papers by online platform WhatsApp constituted valid service.
“Service” is the method by which documents are delivered and passed onto a party with an interest in ongoing court proceedings. To ensure that an individual is aware of court proceedings and has the opportunity to attend and address the court on matters concerning them, the court operates strict rules about how and when an applicant can serve a third party, e.g. by first class post or perhaps using a “process server”.
The matter before the court involved Mandy Gray and her husband, Hamish Hurley, a New Zealand native. As the parties owned properties around the world and routinely jet-setted across the globe, the court determined that it was acceptable for the usual service rules to be set aside and for Mr Hurley to be served court papers from his wife via WhatsApp, allowing the matrimonial finance proceedings to be considered in England.
The service of papers can be a big concern for clients. This is especially true if there is some form of contact dispute during, for example, divorce proceedings or for an application for the emergency return of a child. It is, therefore, essential to ensure that legal advice is obtained to ensure the court’s strict rules relating to service are followed. This will ensure the progression of a case is efficiently pursued and that an application party is not exposed to an adverse costs order.
If you have any questions regarding service of court papers, please contact one of our specialist family law solicitors on 01908 262680 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Philip qualified as a solicitor in 2007 and has worked for firms in London and across the South East since. He was delighted to join leading family law practice Hawkins Family Law in June 2019, having spent previous years at Hunter and Uro in Bedford and London.
Philip’s cases involve acting for high net worth individuals, together with those with a complex matrix of family law issues, tailoring bespoke solutions to meet clients’ objectives.
Philip is a Resolution member and formed part of the campaign to support no fault divorce proceedings. Philip is also contributor to the legal and national media on family law issues.
Philip is married with two young children and lives in rural Bedford.
Please contact Phil directly here at Hawkins Family Law on email@example.com
Hawkins Family Law fields 'a very professional team that delivers a high-class service and has strength-in-depth from senior to junior level'. Managing director and team head Jo Hawkins provides 'clear and accurate advice and moral support through often testing times for her clients; she focuses on deriving the best long-term outcome for her client and other parties'. The practice has particular strength financial matters, including divorce and ToLATA proceedings. Other key figures include Loraine Davenport, who has strong collaborative law expertise and handles complex children cases and high-net-worth ancillary relief matters; Annabel Hayward, who focuses on complex financial provision and co-habitation matters; and Stacey St Clair.
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What the team is known for
Boutique family law firm that punches above its weight in terms of high-value and complex matrimonial finance instructions relating to business assets, pensions and substantial property portfolios, including assisting with the handling of assets abroad. Also represents clients in the negotiation of wealth protection agreements and private law childcare arrangements. Fields a team trained in collaborative law and alternative dispute resolution.
An impressed client says: "The team's personal service and individual care is a great asset,"adding that the lawyers are "always available to assist and understand the occasional need for immediate advice and guidance, providing a very reassuring service."
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