Our specialist divorce solicitors are highly experienced, and will prioritise your best interests in everything they do. Our legal advice is confidential and personalised, to help you achieve a result that’s right for you and those you love.Get in touch
UK divorce procedure
In order to file for divorce you need to prove that your marriage has broken down. This may be due to adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion or separation for a period longer than two years.
The formal divorce procedure begins when you file a divorce petition form. You can pay the fees and submit your petition at your local divorce centre.
If both parties agree with the petition, before or after informal or formal negotiations, the divorce can go ahead. However, if disputes occur and they can’t be easily resolved, your case may go to court.
Court hearings can take up a lot of your time, and are often very stressful and emotional. We always aim to help our clients avoid the courts where this is possible, whilst getting the deal that is best for them. If we do need to go to court we can defend your rights and plead your case, guiding you through the entire divorce process with ease.
Common legal matters in marriage and divorce
Often the most difficult aspect of divorce is how to share assets, in particular the family home.
Depending on your situation you may wish to sell the property and divide the profits, however more complicated situations often occur. If one of you wants to stay in the property you need to find an agreement so the value can be shared equally.
If children are involved any property dispute will always be resolved in the way that benefits them best. One parent may be able to stay in the house until the children turn 18, even if the other parent doesn’t agree.
Disputes regarding child arrangements
Child disputes can easily occur if you disagree about where your children should live, visitation rights, parenting plans or child maintenance.
Making arrangements for children during a divorce is often a very emotional and difficult process, and much better handled outside of the courts. A judge will only hear child custody issues if you can’t reach an agreement through mediation and negotiation first.
Family solicitors can help ensure the agreements you reach are legally binding by drafting a ‘consent order’. After both parents have agreed the consent order, it will be signed off by a judge. They will only do this if they believe you have acted in the best interest of the children and aren’t concerned about their safety.
If you’ve tried everything else and your dispute does go to court, a judge will decide on the arrangements. Judges will always prioritise your child’s best interests, and take their preferences into account where possible.
Unfortunately, domestic abuse is still common in the UK. The Office of National Statistics estimates that 1.9 million people suffered from domestic abuse in the year ending March 2017 in England and Wales alone.
It is often assumed that victims are always women, but over 710,000 men reported being the victim of domestic abuse in the same year. Anyone can become a victim of domestic abuse, no matter their gender, personality or behaviour.
Our family law solicitors can support and guide you towards long-term solutions that protect your safety and rights.
Visa issues after divorce
If you are an immigrant living in the UK on a partnership visa, and your stay in the UK depends on your relationship, our immigration solicitors can provide extra support. They will be able to help you apply for visa extensions, indefinite leave to remain or even asylum, depending on your situation.
Pre and post-nuptial agreements
A prenuptial agreement is a contract between two people drawn up before they get married. It sets out how they want to divide their assets in the event of a divorce.
Prenuptial agreements are legally binding. Unless a court decides they are unfair, they will be enforced if you get divorced.
Having a prenuptial agreement in place gives you both peace of mind that your assets are protected and will be shared fairly.
Because the negotiations on asset distribution have already finished before your marriage, a clean separation is much more likely with a prenuptial agreement.
Postnuptial agreements are similar to prenuptial agreements, but are set up after a couple is already married.
Just as with a prenuptial agreement, the postnuptial agreement clearly outlines how assets will be shared in a divorce. You may want a postnuptial agreement if you got married without any agreement in place. Even though you are currently happily married, a plan would protect both you and your partner if you ever broke up. Having a signed postnuptial agreement gives you and your partner peace of mind that your futures are secure, helping to avoid a messy divorce down the line.
When a couple divorces or separates they need to divide their assets fairly. Any agreements that were put in place prior to their marriage need to be assessed, along with all the assets they have gathered during their relationship. With the right guidance and support you can often reach an agreement through this initial stage of settling your finances. Our expertise in family law means we can help bring this about through negotiations and disclosure from both parties.
Sometimes couples cannot reach an agreement. In these situations, a clear framework of processes has been set out. It is not hard for things to become complex and emotional at this time. Money and assets are sensitive topics for most people. Our expert family law solicitors in Manchester are here to advise and guide you through everything. We can help you reach the outcome you deserve.
Separating or dissolving a civil partnership
Dissolving a civil partnership
Ending a civil partnership is very similar to ending a marriage through a civil divorce. However, there are some important differences that need to be considered.
Our divorce solicitors have extensive experience supporting clients going through a dissolution or annulment of their civil partnership. We can guide and support you during the breakdown and help dissolve your civil partnership. All our expert advice will be tailored to help you achieve the best possible outcome.
Separation of unmarried couples
When unmarried cohabiting couples separate they don’t have the same rights as married couples.
Many people think that after a certain amount of years of living together, unmarried couples are recognised as ‘common law wife or husband’ and treated in the same way as married couples. This is unfortunately not true.
Property disputes for unmarried couples
Separating and splitting assets belonging to an unmarried couple is highly complex, especially when property is involved.
As an unmarried partner you need to provide proof that you are entitled to the property or part of the value of that property, if it wasn’t in your name. If the property was in both names, issues can occur if one of you refuses to leave or doesn’t wish to sell.
For this reason it is always in your best interest to manage your separation carefully and with the expert guidance from our family law solicitors.
At AWH Solicitors we can offer fixed fee packages, as we know our clients prefer to know what they will pay from the outset.
Our platinum uncontested divorce package for the petitioner is only £450 plus vat plus the court fee.
Our contested divorce package
If you can't agree on a settlement with your former spouse our contested divorce package will likely be suitable for you.
- Initial consultation for 30 minutes about the divorce only and completing the divorce petition with you
- Reasonable correspondence with you, the court and the other side in respect of the divorce proceedings
- Drafting the divorce documents, namely; divorce petition, application for decree nisi, statement in support for decree nisi and application for decree absolute
- Keeping you informed throughout in respect of the divorce process
Our platinum uncontested divorce package
Similarly to our contested divorce package, we offer a platinum fixed fee package for the respondent in uncontested divorce proceedings for only £275 plus vat.
- Initial consultation with you for 30 minutes
- Preparing the 'Acknowledgement of Service Form'
- Checking court papers
- Advising you of the Decree Nisi and Decree Absolute once received from the court
What is not included in these fees
If during the divorce process any of these factors arise you will no longer qualify for the fixed fee divorce package. If this occurs we will immediately discuss matters with you to agree a new fixed fee structure with you.
In cases where the divorce is defended, we are prepared to offer fixed packages but will need to discuss and review your case with you to tailor a package that will suit you.
- Obtaining a duplicate copy of the marriage certificate
- Having the marriage certificate translated
- Fees charged by a bailiff/process server in serving the divorce documents on the respondent
- The costs of amending the divorce papers once they have been lodged at court
- If acting for the respondent the costs of applying to the court for the decree absolute
- Dealing with any issues in relation to the relationship in connection with the children, finances, property or domestic violence
- The costs of tracing a party
- Attending court in respect of the divorce proceedings
- Enforcing any costs order
Our Promise to You
Friendly, personal legal services
We promise that our approachable solicitors will provide you with a genuinely personal service that puts your needs first. Our team of experts are always on hand to give you support when you need it.
Award-winning service in our fields of expertise
We pride ourselves in offering the highest standards of service across each of our legal departments. Regardless of your situation, we promise to provide you with the very best legal advice.
Advice tailored to your needs
We promise to listen to your needs and offer the right guidance for your situation.
There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution in any area of the law. Every case requires a tailored approach and you deserve a solicitor who understands this.
Outstanding customer service and care
Our excellent reputation is built on our exceptional level of client care.
Every case is handled with the highest level of respect and many of our clients go on to recommend us after building an invaluable relationship with our solicitors.
Transparent fees and processes
Transparency is very important to us. We promise to provide you with total Transparencyrency on fees, so you know exactly what you are paying for. We’ll also make sure you’re kept updated on the progress of your case every step of the way.
What our clients are saying about us
Very pleased with how fast my claim was settled. Very nice people always at the end of the phone when i wanted to ask questions on my.claim. would deffo use this company again. Matthew was brill very friendly and reliable.
Very pleased with the service I have received, communication has been maintained throughout. Happy with the outcome of my case.
It's always been a pleasant experience using their services. I felt highly comfortable and confident whenever they dealt with my cases in terms of correspondence, communication and performance. I highly regard their services.
Starting the process couldn’t be more simple!
- Contact us Get in touch however suits you best and arrange a consulation with one of our solicitors
- Meet an expert You’ll meet the expert solicitor assigned to your case and discuss all the necessary details
- Authorise Once we’ve got all the details of your case and you’re happy to proceed, just give us the go-ahead
- We get to work It’s time for us to get to work! We’ll set up your file on our system and get to work right away
Get in touch
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