When it comes to family law, most issues need to be handled extremely delicately, and this is where our experts come in. We have dedicated family law solicitors who specialise in each niche area of family law, to give you the best possible advice and guide you towards the best resolution for everyone.
Areas we cover:
- Marriage and civil partnership– if you and your partner plan to get married or enter into a civil partnership, you may need or want to make certain legal arrangements beforehand. For example, a prenuptial agreement that protects your finances and property in case of separation. If the relationship breaks down, the agreement will outline who should get what and how assets should be divided. A family lawyer can advise on how best to set your wishes down in a pre-nuptial agreement, as well as how to ensure the best outcome for everyone.
- Cohabitation– this refers to couples who live together but aren’t married, and who want to lay out what should happen to property and assets if they should split up. This is called a cohabitation agreement, and it is similar to a prenuptial agreement. Crucially, it protects the rights of unmarried couples, especially those who have been in a relationship for a long time and have many shared assets.
- Divorce– the breakdown of a relationship is when many people need expert legal advice the most. It takes skill and experience to navigate the process of legal separation, to negotiate for a fair settlement and make all the required arrangements to the satisfaction of all parties. A good divorce solicitor can minimise the stress and upset involved, taking a weight off your shoulders. If your divorce involves a partner who lives in another country, the case can easily become complicated. In these cases, expert help is needed from a specialist in international divorce law.
- Domestic violence– if you have experienced domestic violence, legal advice is essential during this most difficult of times. A family lawyer can help with the legal arrangements to keep you and your children safe, offering sound advice to help you break free and start a new life.
When a relationship ends, you and your partner will need to sort out how assets such as property will be divided between you. Inevitably, this can lead to disputes over who owns what. Property can be a hugely complicated issue in legal terms, so it’s important to have an expert on your side.
An experienced family law solicitor can help to untangle your shared assets and work out who has the legal right to property you own together. This could be based on who contributes the most to the mortgage payments, or other factors such as who cares for the children (depending on the size of the property) who live in the house. Family lawyers can also help to arrange the division of property and assets of a couple who own a business together, as well as private property.
If a dispute over property has turned nasty and you’re concerned that you may not reach a resolution that is fair to you or find yourself with a worse outcome such as ending up homeless, seek advice from our family law experts. Even complex cases where you simply can’t agree over property and feel like you’ll never make it out the other side can be swiftly resolved by an experienced solicitor.
There are many different legal issues affecting children, which is why it is so important to seek reliable advice from a family law expert if your family is facing any of them. Children’s matters include:
- Parental responsibility– this refers to the legal rights, duties and responsibilities a parent has for a child, as well as property the child owns. If you want to have a say in the important decisions in your child’s life, from where they go to school and where they live, you will need to establish parental responsibility. Birth mothers have automatic parental responsibility, while the situation can vary when it comes to fathers. Establishing parental responsibility is a legal issue involving many different factors, so it requires legal expertise. All further arrangements involving custody (child arrangements), child maintenance and other matters following a separation will hinge on parental responsibility, so it’s important to get it right.
- Child custody(arrangements) – this is usually one of the biggest issues in any separation. Where children will live, who will look after them and how child arrangements will be split or shared are all matters that need to be decided for the good of the children. It can be very difficult for a couple at loggerheads to reach an agreement, and animosity between parents can easily reach a point which is harmful to their children. A family lawyer can help to navigate this thorny issue and work with you towards reaching an agreement that is fair to you, your partner and crucially – your children. If you feel your rights as a parent are being ignored or that an arrangement agreement is unfair, it’s important to seek legal advice as soon as possible to find out what your options are.
- Children’s rights– if a couple splits up, the rights of their children need to be protected and upheld in just the same way as their parents. A family law solicitor can make sure that children get a fair deal in a divorce or other difficult family situation.
- Child protection– when steps are taken to safeguard a child from harm, the courts are often involved. This is why a family law specialist is needed, to help protect the child’s rights, represent the parent and navigate the family towards a positive outcome.
- Adoption– the adoption process can be drawn out and complicated, causing a lot of frustration for people who simply want to welcome a new member to their family. Family law solicitors with experience of the process can help to streamline and make it easier as well as quicker. Your solicitor can take care of the paperwork, offer expert advice and help with any obstacles that may occur