The prospect of divorce can be overwhelming, but there’s plenty of help and advice to be found, and no need to go it alone.
Your first port of call should be your solicitor. Finding the right family lawyer is the key to feeling in control of your situation, and a good solicitor should offer practical support and understanding throughout the separation process.
There are a variety of different options when it comes to divorce, and not all of them involve going to court. Mediation, arbitration and collaborative family law all allow you to resolve disputes privately and effectively without taking your case before a judge.
Family law organisation Resolution has plenty of information for separating couples and promotes collaborative and cooperative methods of divorce. Search for a Resolution-approved family lawyer or mediator here.
In addition, Gov.uk offers step by step advice on the process of separation, and can signpost you in the right direction to finding appropriate help and support.
When you have children, every aspect of separation should be focused on their wellbeing. Choosing a collaborative approach such as mediation or collaborative family law may help to put together a practical plan for the future – beyond divorce – and minimise the impact on your family.
There are also many organisations which offer support for separating and single parents, such as:
- Parent Connection
- 4 Children
- Gingerbread – 0808 802 0925
- National Association of Child Contact Centres
- Family Lives – 0808 800 2222
- Fatherhood Institute
- Only Dads
- Only Mums
Financial negotiations can put extra stress on the process of separation and disagreements over money are often at the core of relationship disputes. If you’re concerned about money issues, speak to your solicitor about the possibility of fixed fee legal services to help you to budget. You may also want to contact the Citizen’s Advice Bureau or the Money Advice Service (0300 500 5000) for more advice.
Relationship counselling can be especially helpful for divorcing couples, even after you’ve made the decision to separate, helping to reduce animosity and foster better understanding between you and your ex as you work through the process. Relate (0300 100 1234) offers plenty of advice on divorce and separation as well as free online live chat with a counsellor.
For more information on separation, divorce, mediation, arbitration and collaborative family law, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the down-to-earth family lawyers at Frances Lindsay & Co. We’re here to take the weight off your shoulders and are always happy to talk you through your options with a free, no-obligation consultation. Visit www.franceslindsay.co.uk or call 01628 634667.collaborative family law, divorce, mediation