Seek help during these unsettling personal events.

Divorce and Separation

There is a common saying – Always expect the best but prepare for the worst.

When we commit ourselves to another person in a serious relationship such as a marriage, we are also creating expectations for our futures lives together and the pursuit of dreams and ambitions such as starting a family.

So, when the unexpected happens, we need the best help, support, assistance, and advice to help navigate not only the personal circumstances but also the legal ones.


In most circumstances when a relationship between two people ends, it simply ceases. However, this is not usually the case with marriage where couples are more intertwined legally speaking.

Some very important elements may continue to bind the estranged couple like arrangements surrounding Financial Matters and Childcare.

If the relationship between two people is already negative and acrimonious, it is evermore important to work towards a satisfactory and practical resolution by consulting an experienced and qualified Family Law solicitors.

Additional Information and Frequently Asked Questions:

Please continue reading for some additional information. The information is not finite, and we always advise our clients and potential clients to seek the counsel of a legal expert in such delicate and complicated matters.

The basics of Divorce Law in England

To obtain a divorce under English law, you must have been married for more than 12 months and the situation should be that the marriage has ‘irretrievably broken down’ due to one of the following factors:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Separation of two years or more
  • Separation of five years or more
  • Desertion

Once the grounds for the divorce have been established, a Petition for Divorce is lodged with the Family Court. Then your spouse is informed of the same. Evidence of service must be shown to the court by producing an Acknowledgement of Service Form signed by your spouse or their solicitors.

You or your spouse have the right to defend your divorce. However, this is rare, and it is difficult to defend divorces.

If you have any doubts regarding your position and your rights, it is best to consult a solicitors as soon as possible.

The Financial Settlement

Financial Settlements are often a source of conflict amongst divorcing couples. Simply explained this involves itemising and valuating matrimonial assets.

Whilst it is always simpler to attempt to reach an agreement by yourselves, always seek mediation from a third party who is a legal expert where required. We advise this to save time and money, as if an agreement is not reached by the above two avenues, then it is the court that makes this determination.

Which factors are considered in determining a Financial Settlement?

The following factors are considered:

  • The duration of the marriage
  • The current and potential future income and assets of each spouse
  • The standard of living enjoyed by the family prior to the breakdown of the marriage
  • The contribution each party has made or will make in the future to the welfare of the family
  • The age of the parties
  • The conduct of each party, and whether the way one party has behaved would make it unfair to the other party if the Court were to disregard it (note: this conduct must be extreme, the courts are not interested in who was to blame for the breakdown of the marriage)
Childcare Arrangements

If there are children involved, it is imperative that whilst the wishes and circumstances of all parties are considered, we at BIAAP advocate and support giving more importance to arrangements surrounding the present and future welfare of the Children.

This is the area where the divorcing parties are likely to interact the most in the coming future and its one of the areas where calm heads will make for speedy work and a happy resolution.

Dividing the Family Home after a Divorce

As part of the divorce proceedings the family home is considered an asset and is usually dealt with in the following manner:

One spouse buys the other’s share in the property
The house is sold, and the proceeds are split.
Bearing in mind the stability of the children – one spouse continues to live in the family home, with the children. In this scenario the other spouse either receives assets equivalent to their share or they receive their share when the property is sold after the children leave the home or the first spouse remarries.

Legal Orders

In cases of physical and/or emotional abuse, you must consult a solicitors immediately to ensure that necessary legal tools can be deployed to protect you and your children. These may include Orders such as Non-Molestation and Occupation. A Freezing Order may also be used in case your spouse will attempt to hide money and assets.

Some cases of Divorce and Separation are not very complicated, but for those that are, it is necessary to seek the advice of a legal expert so that mediation and negotiations can be conducted in a non-confrontational and productive manner with no parties feeling offended, but with both emerging with a practical long-term solution to ensure things are smooth going forward.

It is also important that any third party who is being consulted brings empathy and sensitivity to the table whilst dealing with such matters.

Additionally, here at BIAAP, we always try to ensure a fair and equitable settlement with regards to the finances, we want all parties to feel that their rights were protected – provided that any solution accounts for the best interest of any children.

This website is for informational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. As the law is subject to changes and updates, please do not act and/or refrain from acting based on anything you read on this site. Always seek legal assistance when required from a accredited and practicing professional i.e. solicitors. BIAAP (Brightway Immigration and Asylum Practitioners) is subject to and upholds the laws of the United Kingdom and adheres to the code of conduct required by our profession.