The Family Law Practice’s aim is to support and help you take control of your life through the legal process. The Practice offers legal services in all areas of Family Law. We provide a sympathetic and practical environment in which to discuss issues and difficulties which can so often seem insurmountable. Below are some of the services we offer.
Adoption is a way of providing a home and a family to a child who cannot be brought up by their birth family.
By its very nature the journey to successful adoption can be an emotional process and we can help you with the legal aspects.
When parties separate they may have concerns relating to children that need to be resolved and these might include where the children are going to live and how often they will spend time with the other parent. We can help to advise you on various alternative options and how your particular arrangements might work out in practice. We will always try to keep the emotional impact upon your children to a minimum. Research has shown that it is not the proceeds of separation which has the most effect on the children but the way their parents deal with the separation. That is why we at the Family Law Practice emphasise the need for all to work in the best interests of the children.
Child abduction is the taking of a child from their family, their carer or a person who has lawful care of the child without consent or lawful justification. It is an extremely distressing time and you need to notify the police and seek legal advice as soon as possible. Here at The Family Law Practice we are experienced at dealing with such matters and appreciate the need to see people immediately and to act quickly on their behalf.
A civil partnership is a legally registered relationship between two people of the same sex. If you wish to end your civil partnership then you need to get permission of the Court. Ending a civil partnership follows the same process as a divorce for civil marriage (see divorce section).Civil Partners will be treated in the same way as spouses in legal matters including finance and property rights, pension benefits, inheritance tax and in respect of social security. If a couple choose to live together but not to enter into a civil partnership then they will be treated, in law, in the same way as any cohabiting couple.
At the moment English law does not recognise cohabitation as a distinct legal status. As a result far fewer rights exist for cohabitants than may people expect. The problems unmarried couples face on relationship breakdown is often very similar to those faced by couples who have married but the problem is that the absence of a single piece of legislation dealing specifically with cohabitants makes the task of sorting out those problems more complicated. This is particularly true in the area of finances where the options available to cohabitants do differ from those available to married couples. We can advise you on your situation.
Divorce and Separation
Traditionally solicitors have charged for their services by the hour and we are trying to move away from this wherever possible. One area that lends itself to a fixed price is a divorce. It remains a relevantly recent concept and was introduced it try and keep costs to a minimum for our clients. As a solicitors firm we understand that it is a concern for everybody that is going through the divorce process to keep matters straight-forward the costs as low as possible. Read more
Domestic violence can take a variety of forms including physical, emotional, financial and sexual. If you are subjected to any form of domestic abuse we are able to provide quick and positive assistance to prevent repeat occurrences.
Sarah, a solicitor here at the Family Law Practice, sits on the National Domestic Violence Committee of Resolution
We can offer Legal Aid in order to apply to the Court for a protective injunction against an abuser. Court Orders can range from Non-Molestation Orders to Occupation Order. These Orders can direct a person not to continue their abusive behaviour and can even order them to leave a property. Breaking Non Molestation is a criminal and arrestable offence.
The Courts accept that grandparents can play a very important part in the life of their grandchildren. Sometimes when the parents’ relationship breaks down it can be difficult for the grandparents to stay in touch with the children. Whilst in law there is no such thing as ‘Grandparents’ Rights’ this does not mean that a grandparents relationship with their grandchildren cannot continue even after the parents have ended their relationship. At the Family Law Practice we have advised and acted for many grandparents and helped them remain part of the grandchildren’s lives.
It is always best to try and agree matters but sometimes talking about things directly with each other can be difficult. Mediation is a process in which the participants sit down with an independent third person known as a mediator. The mediator does not provide advice to the couple but helps to facilitate and assist them in their discussions and then identifying solutions that are mutually acceptable to them both.
The Family Law Practice can provide mediation to help couples agree arrangements in respect any issue arising from the breakdown of their relationship without going to Court.
Property & Money Matters:
Property and money matters often need resolving when a relationship breaks down. ‘Matrimonial assets’ can include money, belongings, land and property; pensions. There are few rules or fixed percentages about how any financial assets should be shared. The law is very flexible in order to allow the Courts to take into account the particular circumstances and differences in every case so as to achieve a fair outcome.
Whether you have an amicable agreement to divide matrimonial assets or you are concerned about your position or entitlement then we can help and guide you.
Your housing rights will depend on what type of housing you live in, and whether you are married or in a civil partnership, or cohabiting when the relationship ends. We can advise you on the best way forward with property settlements.
Increasingly we are finding more people coming to us for advice who for one reason or another wish to relocate to another part of the world with their children. If you are a parent seeking to relocate and move abroad permanently with your child or your children then you must have either the consent of the other parent or the permission of the Court. Court applications to relocate with a child abroad are never straightforward. If you are thinking about such a move and matters cannot be agreed then we can help guide and advise you as to the necessary steps of having the matter resolved.
Balancing the protection of abused children against the rights of parents is one of the most difficult and complex areas of family law. At the Family Law Practice we handle the issues involved with the utmost sensitivity and care. We have considerable experience of representing parents undergoing the trauma of separation from their children and can offer the practical advice they need from the initial involvement of Social Services onwards.
Please look at some Frequently asked questions which we hope might help.
“I am writing to express my appreciation of the professional and supportive way you represented me…..I came to you after using another solicitor who I felt saw my case as a cash cow for him. The treatment I received from you and your staff what was in stark contrast ….. I had a feeling you cared about my situation and went beyond what was necessary to ensure good customer service…..it really helped that you were always there to talk things over and give professional and legal opinion whenever I asked….I would recommend you to anyone who is going through family proceedings.”