Family Law

I am no longer living at the family home. Can I stop contributing to the running costs now that we are getting divorced?

This will depend very much on the circumstances of the case.  You should consider taking advice regarding the level of interim support it would be appropriate to provide (if any). If you are a high earner and have supported your spouse over the course...

We have been separated for two years. Can I divorce my spouse relying upon our separation?

It is unfortunate that in order to get divorced straight away without waiting for two years you have to allege fault against your spouse. There is no question that relying upon two years of separation and the consent of your spouse is a much more amicable...

I don't want to get divorced. Can I just ignore the papers?

If your husband or wife wants to divorce you, while you can cause them delay, frustration and additional expense eventually, they will succeed.  You also need to be mindful of the fact that they could pass those additional costs onto you if they are...

Who are CAFCASS?

CAFCASS is the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service and is involved in public law cases involving local authority care proceedings and private law matters, such as where an application is made to the Family Court for a  Child...

Can I have a say in where my child goes to school?

Anyone who has parental responsibility for a child should have the opportunity to be involved in key decisions for that child. This will include decisions in respect of their health, any changes to their name and in respect of their education. As such, both...

Do I have a right to see my Grandchildren?

In most cases following the breakdown of a relationship between parents, the contact that grandparents have simply forms part of the contact that they have with the parent that belongs to that side of the family.  There are however some very...

Should I wait for no-fault divorce?

A bill to introduce no-fault divorces in England and Wales finally received backing from MPs in 2020. The  Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill  has now reached the finishing line of its parliamentary journey and time will now be taken to...

My spouse will not co-operate with the financial side of the divorce? What can I do?

In normal circumstances the parties to a divorce have the opportunity to come to a decision on the financial side between themselves (and just instruct their solicitors to make that agreement formal and legally binding) or they can reach agreement through...

We are getting divorced and have no assets. Is there any point in getting a financial order?

The short answer to this question is yes.  While there is no absolute legal obligation to deal with the financial aspects of the divorce , if you don’t do so there is a real risk that that decision could come back to haunt you at a later...

Divorce for over 60s - is there anything in particular to consider?

Separation and divorce can be difficult at any age. The process itself is of course the same at whatever age the parties divorce. However, there may be additional or different points to consider if divorcing close to retirement age or older. Examples of...

How do I make a financial claim on behalf of my children?

If you are a parent or have a Child Arrangements Order confirming that the child lives with you, you may be able to claim against the other parent in respect of the financial requirements or needs of the child living with you. Under Schedule 1 of the...

Applying to vary an existing Child Arrangements Order

The Court will only vary an existing Child Arrangements Order if it is in the child’s best interest to do so.  The Court apply the “welfare checklist” which takes into account the following factors: The ascertainable wishes...

Claims for spousal maintenance if you have a disability

When assessing if and how much maintenance a party should receive, the court will consider the factors listed within s.25 of the Matrimonial Causes act 1973 (also known as the “section 25 Factors”). Disability, whether it be physical or mental,...

Return Of Jewellery Following Divorce

In some cultures, it is common for members of the bride’s family to gift jewellery to the husband at the wedding, and members of the husband’s family to gift jewellery to the bride. If the parties subsequently separate, the parties may want the...

Alcohol testing in Children Act Proceedings

The Court only need to become involved in deciding the arrangements for children if parents cannot agree the arrangements between themselves. One parent might be concerned about the children spending unsupervised time with the other parent, as a...

What is a Prohibited Steps Order and when is it used?

A Prohibited Steps Order is an order granted by the court which prevents a parent from doing something with a child or children.  It allows the court to apply a restriction upon a mother or father’s parental responsibility. For example, a...

Is No-Fault Divorce coming soon? The Progress of Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill

The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill received royal assent on 25 June 2020 and became law.  It amends the current Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 and Civil Partnerships Act 2004 to remove the requirement for couples to blame each other for the end...

Do I have to get a solicitor for a divorce?

There is no requirement to instruct a solicitor or lawyer to deal with your divorce . However a solicitor acting for your spouse cannot provide you with legal advice. A solicitor instructed by your spouse will act only in accordance with your...

How long do I have to wait to apply for my Decree Absolute?

If you are the Petitioner in Divorce Proceedings (the person who applied for the divorce) you cannot apply for Decree Absolute until 6 weeks and 1 day have passed from the date of your Decree Nisi. In exceptional circumstances an application may be made...

What happens if there is a mistake within a court order?

It is not unknown that occasionally there can be a mistakes within court orders that have been approved by the court. One party might then be left thinking they are bound by the terms of the court order which are incorrect. This came to light recently in a...
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