Family Law Matters

  • Family Law Matters is our collection of free articles on many areas of family law written by Jo Spain.

    Jo-spain-colour-100x100Jo Spain is a family law solicitor and Director.

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  • You should always consult your professional adviser for legal or other advice to match your unique situation. The materials on this site comprise SpainWilliams Limited's views; they do not constitute legal or other professional advice. Please note our disclaimer.

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Getting the best deal in a divorce - the art of compromise

A sensible compromise can mean you don't waste money needlessly and you keep more. photo: 50 British Pounds Sterling CC BY-SA 2.0 deg.ioOccasionally, a client tells me that they want to take their spouse “for everything they've got”within their divorce. My role is to show a client their options, the procedure for moving forward and also, on the basis of the Law itself and my experience, advise them in relation to the likely outcome in financial terms.

It is understandable that, when a marriage has broken down, a party may feel aggrieved, betrayed, abandoned and many other emotions, leading them to feel that the other party should “pay” both emotionally and financially.

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Child maintenance in a divorce – How is this dealt with? - Part 3 of 3

Working out child maintenance - we can help... photo: CC BY-SA 2.0 D. SpainWhen applying for Child maintenance through the Child Maintenance Service (CMS) as a general rule (with some exceptions) the paying party has to live within the UK.

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Child maintenance in a divorce – How is this dealt with? - Part 2 of 3

Working out child maintenance - we can help... photo: CC BY-SA 2.0 D. SpainA Court within a divorce can only involve itself in child maintenance if this has been agreed between the parties and placed within a Consent Order.

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Child maintenance in a divorce – How is this dealt with? - Part 1 of 3

Working out child maintenance - we can help... photo: CC BY-SA 2.0 D. SpainUsually when a marriage breaks down and the parties have children then one person is likely to be the main carer and the other will have contact with the children. The party who is the main carer will usually be paid child maintenance by the other party to help them to house the children and pay for their food, clothes and all other expenses.

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10 questions if you're thinking of divorcing

Ten questions you need to ask... photo: Question Mark Cloud CC BY-SA 2.0 Micky AldridgeIf you are thinking of separating from your partner then here are some questions to consider before you take the first step:

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I am getting divorced and my husband won't move out of the matrimonial home. Can I make him go?

The answer to this is, only in certain circumstances. If your husband is violent, threatening violence or subjecting you to harassment or intimidation then it is possible to apply for an Occupation Order together with a Non-Molestation Order which means he has to vacate the home and in some circumstances cannot come within a certain distance of it. He may also be arrested and charged with a criminal offence if he breaches the Order.

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I want to get divorced but my other half will not sign the Acknowledgement form in relation to the Divorce Petition. What can I do?

If you are divorcing on two years separation then the other person has to consent. Alternatively if you wish to go ahead with adultery then the simplest way to proceed is that the other person admits adultery. In both of these cases they would need to sign the forms sent from Court. However if it is an unreasonable behaviour Petition then there are a couple of ways of getting round this if they refuse to sign.

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“We wish you a Merry Christmas! - or do we?”

Christmas is a special time – made even more magical when there are children in the family. It is wonderful to see them wake up on Christmas morning and peer into their stockings to see what Father Christmas has brought them.

It is difficult to accept that when you are separated from their other parent you may have to give up some of this time to allow them to spend time with the other parent.

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