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Ten years of success: Penningtons Manches Cooper partner edits fifth edition of best-selling global Family Law guide

Posted: 18/01/2021


The fifth edition of the best-selling publication Family Law: Global Guide, better known to family law practitioners as the ‘Blue Book’, will be published by Thomson Reuters on 31 January 2021.

Edited by leading family lawyer and co-head of Penningtons Manches Cooper’s private wealth group, James Stewart, the book is authored by some of the world’s leading family lawyers and is the definitive comparative guide to family law in all major jurisdictions, and the only guide that is marketed globally.

The majority of chapter authors are fellows of the International Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL), the worldwide association of practising lawyers who are recognised by their peers as the most experienced and skilled specialists in their respective countries. They include Pinky Anand, Additional Solicitor General of India, the President of the African Women Lawyers Association and Nigeria’s preeminent family lawyer, Efe Etomi, and UEA lawyer Diana Hamade, one of the most sought after family specialists in the Middle East.

The fifth edition features 100 family lawyers covering 56 jurisdictions and includes 11 new chapters: Belgium, Mexico, Brazil, China, Indonesia, Luxembourg, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, Tennessee and Northern Ireland. It covers all key family law issues including jurisdiction and conflict of law; pre- and post-nuptial agreements; divorce, nullity, and judicial separation; children; surrogacy and adoption; cohabitation; family dispute resolution; civil partnership/same-sex marriage; media access and transparency, as well controversial areas and reform.

In her foreword to the book, IAFL President (and Tennessee chapter author), Marlene Moses, says: “The simple, step-by-step, jurisdiction-by-jurisdiction approach adopted by this book provides a foundation upon which all family lawyers can navigate this ever-changing landscape.”

IAFL European Chapter President (and Scotland chapter author), Rachael Kelsey, comments: “I am so proud to be associated with this fantastic publication. The Blue Book is a powerful tool, which every international family lawyer should be using.”

Sir Matthew Thorpe, former Lord Justice of Appeal and Head of International Justice, says: “This supremely practical book provides basic information on international family law operating in no less than 56 jurisdictions…..in this busy world the provision of basic legal information in an easily digestible form is what we all seek.”

Following his conception of the guide in 2010, James gained the backing of Thomson Reuters and the first edition was published in 2011. Its unprecedented success was followed by launches of the second, third and fourth editions in 2013, 2015 and 2018, with James acting as general editor for each.

Alongside his role as general editor, James co-authored the chapter on England and Wales with colleague Rebecca Dziobon, a family law associate director.

James comments: “Our aim is to ensure that the Blue Book remains the ‘go to’ resource for judges, academics and international lawyers throughout the world and we are confident that the 5th edition will be an outstanding success in this regard. I would particularly like to thank all the chapter authors for their stellar work during the unprecedented circumstances brought about by the pandemic.”

The digital version of the fifth edition is already available - direct purchases can be made via Thomson Reuters / Sweet & Maxwell.


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