Family Law Solicitors Serving Sittingbourne
Breaking Up: The Law
Getting a divorce is almost always painful and messy. But it isn’t necessarily the inevitable conclusion to a bust-up. If you can reach an agreement about your separation, you won’t be throwing away money on legal fees at a time of financial uncertainty. At Ratcliffes in Kent, we are experienced lawyers: we know that sometimes, just knowing where the law stands on:
- Property rights — who owns what
- Financial affairs — who gets what
- Children’s rights — whom they live with
is enough to make couples think again.
Our job is to act as an arm’s length negotiator, to take some of the heat out of the situation and work towards a solution. In many instances, we have been able to refer people to counselling and mediatory services.
Do I Need A Lawyer?
The simple answer is no — you can prepare the paperwork yourself but you do need to know your entitlements. We have dealt with enough appeals to know that often people agree to terms that they don’t fully appreciate so they may end up paying more in the long run.
Our family law and divorce services include:
- Divorce solicitors — Divorce — Ratcliffes will sometimes be able to offer a fixed-fee divorce service. If a fixed-fee divorce is not appropriate in your case, we will always keep you fully informed of costs. We will guide you through the divorce process. We also offer expert divorce mediation.
- Finance and pensions — If you and your partner are able to come to an agreement between you, then we can prepare a consent order that the court will approve.
If you can’t agree, you will need to apply to the court for ancillary relief proceedings, so the court can divide your assets.
- Children — (contact and residence) — Most couples are able to make their own arrangements regarding access. If this is not possible, then the court will decide what arrangements are in the best interests of the children.
- Separation agreements — In some circumstances it may be that a divorce is not the best option for you, in which case we can draft a separation deed for you. Just bear in mind, when you have a judicial separation, you cannot remarry.
- Civil partnerships dissolutions — We advise on all issues, including finance, property and arrangements for children.
- Prenuptial agreements — Sometimes thinking about what to do if the worst happens can save you a lot of distress. These agreements are increasingly used in the U.K.