Expert Divorce Solicitors
Divorce is not a pleasant thing to happen. Think carefully before you act. However, if that is the only option you are left with Osbourne Pinner can promise you three things:
The end of a marriage is never easy, with emotions inevitably running high. But while difficult, the divorce process is critical to your life moving forward. That’s why it’s vital to have specialist divorce solicitors on your side.
Whether you’re considering divorce, or you need to respond to a divorce petition, Osbourne Pinner will add the experience and expertise you need to get things moving. We assist clients throughout the divorce process – from grounds for divorce through to settlement and custody – working towards the best outcome every step of the way.
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How can our divorce solicitors help?
Ending a relationship can be difficult. The last thing you want to do at this stressful time is handle all kinds of legal ramifications. Ideally, you want a divorce solicitor that’s experienced and knowledgeable to take the weight off your shoulders. But also someone that’s compassionate and understands what you’re going through.
That’s exactly what we provide at Osbourne Pinner. Our team of expert divorce solicitors have years of experience, working with hundreds of clients on their divorce proceedings. As well as knowing the divorce process like the back of our hand, this has given us a unique insight into the challenges – both emotional and legal – that you’ll be facing as a party within a divorce.
Our specialist solicitors will guide you through the divorce process, from an initial consultation to the ongoing proceedings and final arrangements. That includes any additional factors such as finances, assets and the custody of children…
Grounds for divorce
Grounds for divorce is the first hurdle to end any marriage. Why exactly are you choosing to end your marriage? Broadly speaking, there is only one ground – which is that the marriage has broken down irretrievably.
However, the irretrievable breakdown of a marriage has to be backed up by one of five issues:
- Adultery – Your partner has cheated on you.
- Unreasonable behaviour – Actually the most common ground for divorce, unreasonable behaviour is anything that can show that your partner has become intolerable to live with. It can range from a lack of support or family disputes to financial recklessness or domestic abuse.
- Two years separation with consent – If both parties agree to the divorce, they can use two years of separation (living apart) as grounds for their divorce.
- Five years separation without consent – If one party doesn’t agree to the divorce, they must have been separated for at least five years.
- Desertion – The least common ground for divorce, desertion refers to a partner leaving the family home and cutting ties for at least two years – but still won’t consent to a divorce. However, given that you will need to prove that you didn’t want to the relationship to end, it’s often easier to use unreasonable behaviour as the ground for divorce.
It’s important to note that none of these grounds apply unless you have been married for at least a year. Also, you cannot use your own adultery, unreasonable behaviour or desertion as grounds for divorce.
Divorce and domestic abuse
While it’s a clear ground for divorce, domestic abuse can also occur as a result of the divorce proceedings. Partners may become angry about the whole situation or make threats about property and children. Whatever the case, we’ll provide the support and advice you need through this difficult time.
The divorce process
While you might want to take action straight away, divorce is a lengthy process. Within that, there are several steps to take. Our expert divorce solicitors will give you the information, support and assistance at every step of the journey…
The first step in the divorce process is a consultation with a divorce solicitor. An experienced, qualified member of the team at Osbourne Pinner will discuss the reasons for the breakdown of your relationship in a safe, confidential environment. You will be asked to provide details of the date of your separation, your family situation and your finances.
Within the consultation, you will be able to ask any questions you have about the process. Our divorce solicitors can advise you on the next steps and the best course of action given the circumstances, including your rights when it comes to children and finances.
All of the information gathered in the consultation will be used to prepare a divorce petition to submit to court. Your original marriage certificate will also be required to issue the divorce petition.
The petition will then need to be signed by the respondent (your ex-partner) once they receive it. They can choose to agree, defend or ignore the petition.
After the petition has been completed and processed, there are two more applications to make for the divorce:
Decree nisi – A provisional decree of divorce which is provided once the court is satisfied you have met the requirements.
Decree absolute – This brings your marriage to an end and replaces your marriage certificate. An application for the decree absolute will be submitted to the court six weeks and one day after the pronouncement of the nisi.
As with any legal process, a divorce can be subject to complications. Your spouse could ignore or defend the divorce petition, for example. Alternatively, the court could reject your divorce petition altogether.
With the right expertise, know-how and attention to detail, an outright rejection of your divorce petition is unlikely to be the case. But rest assured, whatever happens, we will guide you through the entire process and deal with any complications on your behalf.
Our team of divorce solicitors in London has vast experience of representing clients in contested divorce proceedings. We can assist you in the event of a defended divorce petition. We’ll also work with you if there is a cross-petition – where both parties have filed a petition giving their own separate grounds for divorce.
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Divorce solicitors’ costs
Divorce solicitors’ costs can be broken down into two main categories – the cost of divorce processing and the cost of the divorce solicitors’ services.
Standard divorce fees
First and foremost, there are certain fees the court charges to process your divorce. For example, £550 is required when your divorce petition is submitted. This must be paid, at least initially, by the petitioner. The cost may be reimbursed by the respondent as part of the divorce proceedings.
There could also be additional charges for ignored petitions that need to be served (delivered personally), or even a small charge of £11 for a copy of your marriage certificate.
Cost of divorce solicitors’ services
Divorce solicitors’ costs can vary based on the requirements of your case. They can also vary based on whether you’re using an hourly rate or fixed fee divorce solicitors. At Osbourne Pinner, we provide estimates for our divorce solicitors’ costs after an initial consultation, with fixed fee and hourly options.
Financial settlement for divorce
When two parties cannot agree over money, possessions or property at the end of a marriage they may need to ask the courts to make these decisions for them. Needless to say, this can be a long process. However, having the right lawyer on hand with experience in unsettled divorces can make it as painless as possible.
At Osbourne Pinner, we always aim to resolve the financial side of divorce through negotiation, correspondence and/or by referring you to a family mediator. If you are able to reach a settlement in this way, you will avoid the necessity of court proceedings, saving you both time and money.
However, where this route isn’t practical or possible, we can act as your representative. We offer a number of services regarding divorce, including assisting with the arrangements of financial matters in London. Our team will advise on the best course of action and what you can realistically expect from the process.
Family divorce solicitors
It’s not uncommon for divorces to include children. Indeed, many couples decide to get married when they want to start a family. An important part of the divorce is deciding what happens to those children going forward. Naturally, you want this to be as quick and simple as possible for the children’s sake.
As with various aspects of the divorce, not all couples see eye to eye when it comes to children. Many couples engage in a legal battle to gain the custody of their kids. Such legal battles and disagreements are vexing and stressful for all those involved. If both parents wish to keep the children with them after separation, it becomes quite difficult for them to make a decision mutually.
This is another area where our divorce solicitors can assist. Again, we believe that it’s best to resolve custody disputes through negotiation, correspondence and/or a family mediator wherever possible. This could save you a lot of time, money and stress – as well as making things easier for the children in question.
However, if an agreement still can’t be reached, it will always help your case having an experience divorce solicitor on your side. We’ll advise the best steps to take and make a reasonable case to the court on your behalf when it comes to custody arrangements for your child or children.
Our divorce solicitors can also assist with similar problems arising after a divorce. While not exclusively women, a number of cases involve mothers refusing contact to their ex-partner. We can provide divorce solicitors for men and women facing these issues.
London’s local divorce solicitors
There are countless benefits to working with specialist divorce solicitors near you. First and foremost is convenience and clarity. Having divorce solicitors nearby allows you to meet them in person to talk through the process and your case. You know that they’re nearby whenever you need advice or assistance.
This also provides more trust. By visiting local divorce solicitors in person, you can get a feel for their service and how they work. You might even have friends or relatives who have worked with them and can provide a reliable review.
Based at the heart of the capital, Osbourne Pinner is a dedicated team of divorce solicitors for London. Our office is located in Piccadilly Circus, meaning we’re just minutes away from most parts of London by tube. This local service extends across all 33 London boroughs, from Hillingdon, Harrow and Barnet to Sutton, Croydon and Bromley.
In simple terms, wherever in London you’re based, we can assist with your divorce proceedings.
Online divorce solicitors
Divorce brings with it a lot of uncertainty. Sometimes, you want a quick answer to put your mind at ease. That could be at the start of the process when you’re first considering a petition, or during the divorce when you’re concerned about custody. While face to face meetings are great for consultations, contacting divorce solicitors online can be of great help for ongoing support.
At Osbourne Pinner, we have a completely flexible approach to offline and online divorce solicitor services. Our free initial consultation can take place in the office, by telephone or by video call on Skype, FaceTime, Whatsapp or Zoom. If your consultation is going to take place by telephone or video, we simply ask that you send us your photo ID before the meeting.
While working with our divorce solicitors, online communication and updates are certainly an option. We can get in touch with you by email on an ongoing basis, for instance, if you want to stay discreet about your situation around colleagues or family members.
Working with online divorce solicitors can also be helpful if you’re based further afield. As divorce solicitors in London, for example, we’re happy to work with individuals across the UK
Our divorce services
Consent Order in Divorce – Our team can assist in every step of the consent order, from initial finances to ongoing maintenance.
Financial Settlement – Make sure everything goes to plan with money and assets. Our team will get you a fair deal.
Property and divorce – Property is often the biggest asset involved in a divorce. Sell or stay, we’ll be in your corner.
Child arrangement order – Make sure you get what you want and need from a Child Arrangement Order with top-notch legal assistance.
Child custody – Our specialist team can give you the best chance of success when it comes to the custody of your child or children.
Pre-nuptial agreements – Pre-nuptial agreements come into play during the divorce. We’ll help you get what’s agreed.
Post-nuptial agreements – Make sure your post-nuptial agreement is honoured with expert assistance from our team.
Civil partnership – Our divorce solicitors can also provide advice and assistance to legally end civil partnerships.
Abusive relationships – Get the discreet support and advice you need to step away from an abusive relationship through divorce.
Divorce loans – The cost of divorce can add up. Working with our partners at Novitas, we can help you spread the cost.