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Family Law

Family Law

Going through a divorce or separation can be an extremely emotional and stressful time. This stress is further heightened when issues relating to child custody or property disputes arise.

When going through a divorce or separation you want the peace of mind to know that your matter is being dealt with by experts who understand how big of a change it can be and how traumatic an effect it can have on you.

Here at ULA Solicitors our team of extensively experienced divorce and separation solicitors are able to support you by offering a sympathetic ear and being sensitive to the issues that you face. We offer practical advice and strive to achieve the best outcome for you.
In the past, we have dealt with very complex matters involving children, finance and property with results that our clients have been pleased with.

Areas of law

Divorce and separation
If you believe your marriage has broken down then ULA Solicitors has a team of highly experienced family law solicitors who are able to help you deal with your situation in a clear and stress free manner.

Children and parenting
This is often the biggest area of dispute during a divorce. ULA Solicitors are able to advise on custody, contact and parenting time arrangements as well as financial issues relating to the child's well being.

Money and property
A divorce can involve the distribution of a large amount of money and or a property. This can become quite complex and place a real strain on an individual, especially during what can be an emotional time. We are able to help take the stress away from you and deal with complex matters such as these.

Divorce and Separation:

This is one area of family law which can be difficult for people to deal with. There are many factors at play here, and sometimes people's circumstances make it so that they do not want to deal with their husband/wife. In such instances, where there is lengthy legal proceedings involved which require the involvement of both parties many prefer to have someone in the middle who not only advises but also interacts with the other party.

At ULA Solicitors we have worked with many individuals in the past and have obtained successful divorces for them.
Obtaining a divorce is a two part process:

1. Decree Nisi
2. Decree Absolute

There are variousthings to consider when filing for a divorce, which a solicitor would be able to advice an individual about. For example, one must first consider whether they have a ground for a divorce. There are various grounds on which one may wish to obtain a divorce, these include:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion
  • Separation for more than 2 years
  • Separation for at least 5 years

Once one has established that they have grounds for divorce, and what those grounds, they have to be file for divorce. Knowing which application to submit can be tricky and hence a solicitor can be valuable. Another issue which people have when filing for a divorce is to pinpoint the place of residence of their husband/wife. Normally, when the party has decided to seek legal representation for the purposes of their divorce, one side's solicitor can obtain the address of the other through the other side's solicitors and vice versa. A fee will also need to paid when filing for a divorce.

Following one side filing for a divorce, the other side must then complete the acknowledgement of service sent to them. The difficulty can sometimes be understanding whether or not to complete this, and what parts of the form to complete in instances where you are disputing the divorce, compared to where you agree with it. In instances where you may disagree with the divorce a fee of £245 may need to be paid.

If one's husband/wife agrees with the divorce then one may apply for a decree nisi. If the court agrees with your grounds for divorce then the husband and wife would be sent a certificate with a date and time when the decree nisi was granted. Sometimes, the judge may not agree with your grounds for divorcing and hence will send you a refusal of Judge's certificate stating that the couple may not divorce and the what to do next.

If the decree nisi is granted then the couple have to wait 43 days before they can apply for a decree absolute. Even if you did not initiate the divorce you may apply for the decree absolute. The court will consider grounds for granting and that all time limits have been met when granting the divorce.

There is no legal aid available for divorce matters across the UK and hence an individual seeking a solicitor's help would have to pay privately.

From the above one can see that the process involved can be both lengthy and complex, with various forms to complete and deadlines to meet, at ULA Solicitors we have specialist solicitors who are able to assist you throughout this process.

Children and Parenting:

Disagreements about parentage and child custody are probably one of the most difficult areas resulting from a divorce or separation for both parents. At ULA Solicitors we understand this and hence have a team of solicitors able to assist.

There are three main areas relating to parenting:

  • Claiming child maintenance
  • Adding a father's name onto the birth certificate
  • Correcting a birth registration

Claiming child maintenance:
Parents can arrange child maintenance between themselves this is a private arrangement. In the event that the parents cannot agree the Child Maintenance Service can be of some assistance. They can be of assistance where one parent is able to locate the other, where there are uncertainties about parentage, working out how much maintenance should be paid, renew the maintenance when the parents circumstances change and can take action if payments are not made.
No all parents know about the help provided by the Child Maintenance Service and/or how to get in touch with them. At ULA Solicitors there are individuals who are able to guide and assist you in seeking the help you require and also liaising with the CMS until your matter has resolved.

Getting a new birth certificate for your child:
In order to obtain a new birth certificate in the event that the father's name needs to be on it certain forms need to be completed and sent to the register office, following which a new birth certificate would been to be ordered. Sometimes this process can be confusing and hence at ULA Solicitors we have individuals who are able to assist with this, and in the completion of the necessary forms.

Correcting a birth certificate:
Here again the individual would need to complete certain paperwork, sometimes such as in the instance where the wrong father's details need to be removed the mother would need a DNA test or court order. As such yet again the value of a solicitor can be seen, in not only advising one as to how to go about this, but also in completing various forms, and obtaining any necessary court orders.

There are three main areas relating to children:

  • Where your child has been taken abroad
  • Stopping your child's passport
  • Where your child is taken into care

Where your child has been taken abroad:
This is a difficult area where the situation may actually result in a criminal enquiry as well. Therefore, in such instances it is best for a parent to seek advice from a solicitor. At ULA Solicitors due to our expertise in both family and criminal matters across England we are able to advice you on what necessary steps you should be taking.

Stopping your child's passport:
This would be in those instances where one was fearful that the other parent of the child would obtain the child's passport and take the child abroad. In such instances one would usually require a court order in order to stop their child's passport. To obtain this order an individual may require the help of a solicitor.

Child taken into Care:
A care order can be given by a court and allows the council to take a child into care. It is usually applied for by the council where they believe the child is at risk of suffering significant harm. The Care Order usually lasts until the child's 18th birthday, the child is given up for adoption, or the court lifts the order.
Certain individuals would require solicitors when trying to retain guardianship of their child, and hence have the court order lifted. At ULA Solicitors we have a team of solicitors able to advice in this regard.

Money and Property:

Following obtaining a divorce and receiving a decree absolute, individuals have to deal with the division of assets.
The solicitor in such matters acts a mediator allowing the individuals involved to agree on how to split their assets. They would require a solicitor to draft a consent order and ask the court to approve this. The fees for this are £50.

If they cannot agree then one can apply to the court to have the matter settled. This would be by way of the court issuing a financial order. The fees to apply for a financial order at £255.

At ULA Solicitors we have a team of individuals who are able to assist you at this stage of your divorce, whether through mediation or in the event that you want to apply to the court to have the matter resolved.

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