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Term Main definition

Person who has the legal authority and duty to care for the person and property of a “ward”.

Habitual Residence

Jurisdiction in which someone voluntarily lives for his work or education and where he conducts his family life.

Hague Convention

One of several international agreements.

Hand Down

To deliver the written version of a judgment at a later date.


Point at which a child passes from the care of one parent to that of the other.


The use of threatening, abusive or insulting words or behaviour to cause a person alarm or distress.


Ill-treatment or the impairment of health or development.

Synonyms - Hurt, Damage, Impair
Harvey Order

Order for the allocation of the former matrimonial home whereby one party remains in residence and pays rent to the other.

Heads of Agreement

Written summary of an agreement – usually financial – reached through successful mediation, which can be worked up into a court order.


Court session conducted before a judge.


Statement which is not given in oral evidence, but which is nevertheless accepted as evidence.


For a court to make its final decision or ruling on an issue.

Home Rights

Right of a party to remain in a property during separation or divorce when it is owned by the other spouse or partner.


Condition of a child who cannot inherit from his father.

Imerman Documents

Documents which have been obtained illegally or fraudulently.

Want to know more about Family Law terminology?

A big thank you to Nick and Ruth Langford for their contribution to the Wikivorce glossary. For a more in-depth definition of the various legal terms listed above take a look at their book : The Family Law A to Z available to buy on Amazon.