Family and divorce
As family law solicitors, we advise individuals and families based both in Warwickshire and across the UK on children, family and divorce law matters focusing on achieving the best result in the most cost-effective and straightforward manner.
When you are looking for divorce advice, it is important to find a divorce solicitor that will guide you through the process, from separation through to exploring whether you have grounds for divorce, the implications of divorce for children within the marriage and through to securing your divorce papers, the decree nisi and decree absolute.
Recognising that dealing with family problems can be a stressful and uncertain time, our lawyers will explore alternatives to court, including collaborative law and divorce mediation.
Our family and divorce lawyers advise on:
- pre-nuptial and pre-civil partnership agreements
- getting a divorce
- divorce mediation
- dissolution of civil partnerships
- relationship breakdown of unmarried couples
- collaborative law
- family mediation
- children's issues including orders to determine residence, contact, parental responsibility and permanent removal under the Children Act
The first step to obtaining legal advice is often the hardest to take. Our family law team offer two ways to access help and support.
Fixed fee appointment
This is the best option should you require specific advice regarding your circumstances.
An initial consultation meeting with one of our specialist team lasts for up to 1 hour, for a fixed fee of £100 plus VAT. They will go through your concerns; explain the steps that can be taken and highlight any immediate problems.
- Can be conducted over the phone, remotely or, in person.
- Can be arranged at a time that is convenient to you.
- Will be personal to you and allow you to consider the next steps to take.
Before an appointment we will require you to complete our ID formalities and will take you through these requirements when you make the appointment.
What is a fixed fee meeting?
We understand that family disputes are stressful and so finding the right family lawyer to deal with your case is important. A confidential appointment will be arranged with an experienced family law solicitor where you will have the opportunity to discuss your personal circumstances and also receive clear and concise advice.
How long will it take?
The initial consultation is crucial in order to gain an understanding of your case. This initial interview allows us to discuss your circumstances and give you clear advice tailored to your circumstances.
What will be covered in the meeting?
A short questionnaire, which will set out the background to your case, will be sent to you to complete in advance of the meeting. We will ask you to identify any concerns which you have so that we can focus our advice on the issues that matter the most to you and make the best use of the time available. The agenda for the first meeting will usually include the following:
- The background to your case and your concerns;
- Divorce - grounds, process, costs and timescales;
- Financial matters - options for dispute resolution (including mediation) financial disclosure, a financial application to the court including details of the process and procedure, the approach of the court in dealing with income, capital, pension claims and interim financial arrangements as well as costs and timescales;
- Children’s matters - parental responsibility, living arrangements, contact arrangements, any concerns arising, issuing a children’s application including details of the process, costs and timescales;
- Likely costs and funding options.
Family law clinic
Alternatively, at this stage you may only need general guidance on the law or procedure. To help with this we have set aside time for an initial chat each Wednesday afternoon between 2 and 4pm.
- need to be booked in advance and can last up to 30 minutes depending on the enquiry.
- will take place by phone or remotely.
- will provide you with information and general guidance on your circumstances rather than specific advice.
Before a consultation we will need you to provide the names and address of both yourself and the other person involved.
"They were supportive through very emotional and difficult circumstances. They were open to my thoughts and opinions and gave tailored, practical advice I could trust."
My spouse hasn’t done anything wrong but we no longer love one another. Can we still get divorced?
The only ground for a divorce is the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. You must show to the court one of five facts to include unreasonable behaviour (which is subjective) and separation as the reason that the marriage has broken down.
I have split up from my spouse; do I have any other options separate to divorce?
You can formalise your separation by way of a separation agreement, which will incorporate any agreement that has been reached between you both, rather than issuing divorce proceedings.
How long will it take for me to be divorced?
A divorce can usually take three to five months to finalise from start to finish. You will also need to consider dealing with the finances of the marriage at the same time, which may delay the conclusion of the divorce proceedings.
If I reach a financial agreement with my spouse, is this automatically binding?
No, it is not. Once a financial settlement is reached between you both, you need to incorporate this into a court order which will be sent to the court for the approval of the Court. This process usually takes place within the divorce proceedings. Once the order has been approved by the judge, this will become legally binding between you both.
Will I have to sell my house following a divorce?
Just because you are going through a divorce does not mean that you will have to sell your home. An agreement will need to be reached regarding the division of the assets, which will include any equity that may be in the family home. Options can be explored, which may include one spouse paying the other their share of the equity in the property, whether this is now or sometime in the future.
Can I protect my pension during my divorce?
If you wish to retain your pension as part of a financial settlement through a divorce, then you have the option of offsetting your pension provision against other assets within the marriage.
My spouse and I cannot agree who the children will live with when we get divorced, what happens?
The court will only become involved with matters relating to children were there is a dispute between the parents. When a couple separate, they are encouraged to try and reach an agreement regarding the arrangements for where the children will live and how often they will see the other parent. If an agreement cannot be reached that it is open for either parent to make an application to the court for a child arrangements order. The court will then determine the arrangements for the children.
Is there a standard pattern for how much time my children should spend with each of their parents?
There is no standard pattern that she must follow. You should consider what is in the best interests of the children them to maintain a relationship with both parents and for them to spend some quality time with both parents, if it is safe to do so. Often the children will spend alternative weekends with each parent as a minimum however, this would be based upon many factors to include whether it is possible for each parent to have the children on alternative weekends, whether they are in the local vicinity and the needs and best interests of the children.
Who takes on the marital debt following a divorce?
This will need to be considered as part of the financial division between you both. It may be possible to use some of the equity in your house or other savings to pay off any marital debt.