Form C, The Efficiency Statement and What Judges Expect to See

Published: 16/12/2022 19:33

The Form C, also called the allocation order, is the order that the court makes at the same time as issuing the Form A. Well, that is interesting, you may be thinking. Bear with me, dear reader because I now mention the Financial Remedy Portal versus Familyman, which will either spring joy or dread, depending on your personal take.

When the Efficiency Statement came into effect, within a few weeks the Form C had been changed in the portal-issued cases to reflect the Efficiency Statement requirements for documents and information pre First Appointment. Familyman, however, had been overlooked so we had the curious position of two different forms of directions timetables being issued, one of which did not mention the Efficiency Statement at all.

What to do? I have the answer after meeting with Mr Justice Peel and HHJ Hess. In short, the judges are expecting to see:

  1. First appointment: ES1, ES2, Form G and the documents referred to in paragraph 10 of the Efficiency Statement (draft questionnaires, mortgage capacity information and property particulars) whether you want to use First Appointment as an FDR or not. Oh and don’t forget your certificates of service – FPR 9.13(6).
  2. FDR: ES1 and ES2 updated plus a chronology. This is the same for a final hearing.

There has been some confusion about whether mortgage capacity information and property particulars are needed before every First Appointment – or only if you intend to use the First Appointment as an FDR. The answer: before every First Appointment so the judge can see the lie of the land when it comes to making directions.

There has also been some confusion about whether there is still a need for a chronology and statement of issues in addition to the ES1 and ES2 before First Appointment. The answer: no. This makes sense given that the ES1 has all of the information in it that would be in a chronology and a statement of issues. So, a chronology is only needed before FDR.

On the certificate of service point, FPR 9.13 does not specifically say that pension trustees/administrators must be served with notice of the financial application. The previous version of the Rules did, and I carry on this practice, serving notice on the pension trustees/administrators as I do with mortgagees.

My last comment is about the Form A, issued in portal cases. There was a glitch in the matrix where the Form A was being issued with the 16 digit number of the divorce case and not the financial case so when it came to claiming cases, computer would say no because the wrong 16 digit number was being entered, even though said number was on the Form A. This is being corrected but it is something to watch out for. Notice of Change can be implemented online via the portal so if it is not working for you, check that you have the right 16 digit number – there is one for divorce and one for finance – and try again.

©2023 Class Legal
Class Legal


Share this

    Most read