Our experienced Exeter family law solicitor Philippa Buckland, has taken a look at why using specialist divorce lawyers is important when it comes to a separation:
I often get asked why seeing a specialist divorce lawyer is important these days in Divorce Proceedings when it is so easy to conduct a DIY divorce.
Well I would say that it is not particularly easy to run your own divorce case. To start with somebody going through a divorce is already emotionally vulnerable. Although the forms and terminology have made the divorce process more accessible for the ordinary person, the divorce petition is still a fairly complex legal document, and the divorce procedure itself is a staged process, which doesn’t end with the issue of a divorce petition.
Of course it will be confusing, especially to those who may be experiencing the pain and upset of a marriage breakdown.
There are also other complications that can occur along the way :-
what if the Respondent refuses to acknowledge receipt of the court papers?;
what if the petition if worded in such a way that it does not persuade a Judge that the Petitioner is entitled to a divorce?
What about the financial aspects of a divorce?
Will an unrepresented person realise that on Decree Absolute they will loose all entitlement to their spouse’s pension, unless they have a formal financial agreement?
And perhaps the biggest difficulty of all – what if there has been abuse – psychological, physical, sexual or financial within a marriage – how will an unrepresented person summon the courage to end an abusive relationship without specialist support and legal help?
Nowadays all Court office counters can only be accessed by making a telephone appointment first, so the Court office staff who previously would have willingly provided help to those trying to complete divorce papers themselves are not so readily available.
Additionally, in a court saving and efficiency exercise, all divorces in the south west will now be issued out of Southampton Court office, so enquiries will all have to be made by email or phone.
A specialist divorce practitioner can alleviate all of those problems, take the strain, provide professional support and facilitate what is for most people a difficult process, by highlighting and negotiating around difficult areas within a divorce process, and provide much needed advice on the other linked areas of finances and children.
If any of the above has hit a nerve and you would like to discuss your divorce with me please ring for an appointment. At the Family Law Company we offer a free half hour appointment so you can discuss your options without the extra worry of expense.