Six frequently asked divorce questions and answers

There are few processes that are as emotionally draining as divorce; consequently, it is important to deal with some of the initial issues as soon as possible.

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The government has recently undertaken a consultation on the divorce process and the law has changed.

The good news is that couples in the UK no longer have to concern themselves with listing the behaviour of their partner, as we have moved towards a no-blame culture.

Getting the correct legal advice at an early stage eases the anxieties of both parties. Gloucester solicitors specialising in family law, such as www.deeandgriffin.co.uk/, will help to address the issues that are frequently raised.

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1. Finances

Although you may be able to reach a mutual agreement on financial matters following the divorce, it is important that this is recorded in a consent order, which a family court judge will seal. This will ensure a final settlement is in place and you will be protected against any future claims by your ex-spouse.

2. Mediation

Mediation often leads to better outcomes and judges often wish to see that couples have used this option wherever possible. The courts should be a last resort when it comes to arrangements for children and how to split assets. Family lawyers will ease the way to an agreement.

3. Dividing assets

The starting point is a 50-50 split and the law does not discriminate between breadwinners and homemakers. The courts are keen to see that both parties move on from the marriage or civil partnership on an equal footing. Children or dependents in the household will influence the arrangements.

4. Costs

The current court fee for a divorce is £550. If you are employing a solicitor to deal with the matter, their fees will be payable at an hourly rate. Discuss these fees with your family lawyer of choice.

5. Children

As mentioned above, the welfare of children is a key concern in a divorce process. Although legal advice and mediation should solve any problems, an application for a child arrangement order can be made as a last resort.

6. How long will it take?

A general rule of thumb is four to six months, although service acknowledgement and pressure on the courts can extend this.

Seeking legal advice as soon as possible will ease the process.