There is a common misconception that couples who live together have legal rights similar to those that are married or in a civil partnership, with the term ‘common law marriage' often used. In fact, cohabiting couples do not gain any automatic rights to property or assets, to maintenance payments or access to their partner's pensions if they separate or if one of them passes away.
The government has recently published guidance on three key changes to child maintenance compliance that has come into effect as of 20 December 2018.
A surge in challenges faced by children and families in an era of austerity has resulted in a demand for help in children’s services, according to new research. The report released last month – Safeguarding Pressures – was the sixth phase of the study and had the highest ever response rate from 140 of the 152 local authorities in England, covering 11.3 million (95%) children and young people under 18.
Heterosexual couples across England and Wales will soon be able to choose to enter into civil partnerships instead of marriage. Civil partnerships will provide heterosexual couples with financial advantages which, until now, were only available through marriage.
Relationship troubles are inevitable, but how you handle the situation is entirely dependent on you and your personal circumstance. Issues can range from daily life stresses, money problems, parenting techniques to disputes among family members and friends.
The sad fact is that the most up to date statistics show that 42% of marriages end in divorce with half of those occurring in the first 10 years of marriage. That is the highest divorce rate in Europe and does not take into account the number of cohabitees that separate.
Great news that at long last the government seems prepared to do away with the fault based divorce system. Many of us could never understand why the law on this point was so out of touch on this issue.
A recent article in the Guardian highlighted research that questioned the thinking that has been around for many years about staying in an unhappy marriage. The thinking often quoted as “mend it, don’t end it” has long been promoted but studies have now found that not always to be the best advice.
As many people will be aware the EU (Withdrawal) Bill is currently being debated in the House of Lords. Resolution have provided an update as they have been putting their views to the Government in writing and now have a meeting scheduled for this month with the officials involved in the debate. They plan to discuss alternatives to the current structure. Resolution have stated that: “Whilst it will be difficult to shift
While this is an exciting time of year for many people it can be a time where difficulties in a relationship can become exacerbated. Particularly if children are involved. Most parents will want to spend time with their children over Christmas so ideally what the children might like to do needs to also be taken into account. If you haven’t made plans already try to agree where the children will be, for how long and perhaps
Nigel Shepherd, chairman of the family lawyers association Resolution, of which Reshma is a member, says that family arbitrations handled by them have doubled in a year. Arbitration can be binding or non-binding but either way can be quicker and more flexible than the court system. Using a Resolution member solicitor will give you more flexibility and control of both your time, and has the potential to reduce your costs.
Baroness Hale, the first female president of the Supreme Court and Britain’s most senior judge, is now backing the Times campaign for the law to be changed to end fault-based divorce. Resolution has been campaigning for this change for a long time and this is a positive step. Labrums' Family solicitor and Resolution member, Reshma, says: “the current divorce process can result in couples lying about each other to divorce
With this week focusing on children in need it is important to remember what a child needs when parents are separating or divorcing. All the things your child needed before the divorce or separation will still be needed no matter what the age. How those needs get met, can be a real challenge as some parents have different parenting styles, household structures and rules. It helps when parents are on the same page about everyday
If you are considering getting a divorce you will know there are numerous financial implications to consider. It is often very difficult to separate the emotional stress from the practical issues which need to adressed. An area which can be overlooked is that of pensions. There are various factors to consider, including pension offsetting, equalisation of pension incomes and treatment of foreign pensions. This area of financial planning can
HM Courts and Tribunals (HMCTS) has provided an update on its plans to modernise e-working in family law. It’s vision is to have paperless processes from issue to resolution across this often complex and emotional area of law. The first step will be to introduce “shared storage systems”, hopefully by Spring 2018. At Labrums, we are aware of the benefits being paperless can bring to clients in terms of speed of
Summer can be a lovely time of year but can also be very stressful for couples particularly if the relationship is not going well. Planning and preparing for a holiday followed by uninterrupted time together and with the family can bring any cracks to the fore. If you would like to discuss your relationship issues and potential next steps please contact us to make an appointment to see our expert Reshma Sunnassee on 01727 858807 or
We are continually being asked how much we charge for initial consultations for family law issues, not least when it comes to couples getting divorced. Our answer is simple, the first session is free, we believe it is fundamental that clients feel comfortable and confident in their lawyer and it is not fair to charge for this session. You can have a free 30-minute family law appointment, where you will be able to speak to our family law experts
The below article details how a Harpenden man attempted to defraud his stepmother using a Power of Attorney. It is vital to ensure you get expert legal advice when preparing Powers of Attorney. Carefully and professionally prepared Lasting Powers of Attorney can assist greatly where people may need, or want, assistance in looking after their affairs. Read the full article here. For more information call Iain Wanstall on 01727 858807
Among non-lawyers, there prevails a belief that marital assets are simply divided 50:50 in a divorce. However, you should not assume that this is always the case as illustrated in this recent article in The Times. As this very recent case shows that the final outcome can be rather different. Read the article here: https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/divorce-ruling-ends-era-of-50-50-split-cmzkfxkqm?shareToken=1e1067b19eaa453a8baf4f196cf409a0
The President of the Family Division, Sir James Munby, has recently issued his 17th View from the President's Chambers, as to the separation of divorce and financial proceedings. He says that the separation is necessary because: only a minority of divorce cases give rise to a financial claim divorce, as a process, is largely administrative and bureaucratic with limited judicial involvement, and unless the petition is defended, involves
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