Family Law

What happens at a Financial Dispute Resolution (FDR) hearing?

When dividing matrimonial finances at court, the ‘Financial Dispute Resolution’ hearing (FDR) is usually the hearing after the First Directions Appointment (FDA).  At the first hearing, preliminary issues will be decided such as whether...

How does separating from my spouse affect Capital Gains Tax?

Typically married couples will be exempt from Capital Gains Tax (CGT) when they transfer (or sell) assets between themselves. This is because the disposal of assets is not treated as ‘chargeable’. The law states that the transfers between spouses...

Opposite-sex couples can now enter into civil partnerships

The Civil Partnership (Opposite-Sex Couples) Regulations 2019 (the “Regulations”) came into force on 2nd December 2019 and allow opposite-sex couples to enter into civil partnerships in England and Wales. The Regulations require couples to give...

Can I get divorced in England and Wales if I have lived abroad?

In England and Wales, the court can deal with your divorce or dissolution of your civil partnership if at least one of the following applies: Both parties are habitually resident i n England and Wales. Both parties were last habitually resident in...

Can I get divorced if my spouse lives abroad?

If you were married or entered into a civil partnership in England and Wales, but your spouse lives abroad, you will need to think carefully about how to serve the divorce proceedings on them overseas. You can initially post the issued divorce proceedings...

Entitlement to Universal Credit following a divorce

One of the sad realities of divorce is that a household that enjoyed a moderate income whilst married, will now need to be divided in order for two households to be supported. This may leave one, or both, parties in a position where they need state...

Measures to protect victims of domestic abuse at Court

This blog will briefly look at the measures the court can put in place specifically in relation to Children Act Proceedings where domestic abuse is alleged. If you are involved in Children Act Proceedings (either as the Applicant or the Respondent) both...

What is a McKenzie Friend in Family Law Proceedings?

The term McKenzie Friend covers a wide range of people who can provide support to Litigants in Person at court. You can apply to be a McKenzie Friend in  Family Law Proceedings  as well as...

Which party pays for the costs of a divorce?

A recent UK Family Law Consumer Research Report carried out by IRN Research revealed that almost two-thirds of couples who divorce or dissolve their civil partnership pay fixed legal fees, rather than being charged on an hourly basis, if they instruct a...

Is dissolving my civil partnership the same process as obtaining a divorce?

The procedural aspects of terminating a civil partnership are the same as a couple obtaining a divorce, under the Civil Partnership Act 2004.  The same ‘ground’ must be proved – that the civil partnership has broken down...

How do I start the mediation process?

  Mediation may be helpful if you and your partner, spouse, or civil partner are separating. You will meet with a specially trained mediator who will help you to negotiate arrangements when your relationship has ended, including about finances...

Do I have to go to court to get divorced?

To legally end your marriage, it is necessary to apply to the court and begin the legal divorce process . However, unless the divorce is defended by the other party, there will be no need for you to attend court. The judge will consider the divorce...

Can a parent change a child's school without the other parent's consent?

Mark Vandaele, the Head of the Family Department at George Green Solicitors Wolverhampton, has recently dealt with the above issue at court on an urgent basis. A parent cannot unilaterally change their child’s school without the consent of others who...

Can I apply for Decree Absolute out of time?

The Decree Absolute is the formal legal document which ends your marriage. If you are the Petitioner you can make your application for Decree Absolute as soon as six weeks and one day after the pronouncement of the Decree Nisi. However, if you apply for ...

Should I issue my divorce petition online?

Since May 2018, individuals but not solicitors, have been able to issue divorce petitions online, and 40% of divorce petitions are now issued online. However, recent Ministry of Justice data shows that petitions issued online are less likely to result...

What rights do I have if I cohabit rather than marry?

Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics reveal that only 50.5% of people in England and Wales were married in 2018; which has decreased from 51% in 2017. On the other hand, cohabiting couples are the fastest growing family type, with an...

What are lump sum payments in a divorce settlement?

Even after you have divorced your ex-spouse, you must also reach a financial settlement with them to avoid any outstanding financial claims in the future even after your divorce has been finalised. If you cannot reach an agreement with your ex-spouse...

Who pays the costs of Private Children Proceedings in court?

The starting point is always that each party will pay their own legal costs in private children proceedings , regardless of the outcome of the case. The case of Re T (a child) (2005) confirms that it will be exceptional for the court to make a costs...

Protection from Domestic Abuse: Can I obtain an injunction?

Non-molestation orders are a common type of injunction that can protect victims of domestic abuse. The order prohibits a person (the respondent) from molesting another person, i.e the applicant or their child. The types of behaviour that can be prohibited...

Children Law: Can a parent be restricted from making further Court Applications?

When the court is considering an application for a Child Arrangement Order , the court has the power to order that no further applications can be made in respect of the children without the express permission of the court. These orders are often called...
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