Divorce: Why Hire a Lawyer?

Divorce is a big life adjustment for everyone involved. Yet having a trusted legal advice can be an asset to the process. When entering any legal proceedings, it is important to have an understanding of the law and how it will affect you and your case. However, it is vital to seek legal guidance from a solicitor who can tailor advice for your specific case.

  • An experienced Family Law Solicitor can provide advice before you enter legal proceedings and help prepare your case.
  • Your lawyer will guide you through the breakdown of assets, such as finances, property, pensions, and businesses.
  • Hiring a divorce lawyer can also be invaluable when working out a co-parenting system that works for two parties.

Scottish Grounds for Divorce:

  • Adultery
  • “Unreasonable behaviour”- although there is no legally set criteria for what a couple may find ‘unreasonable’, this is where your lawyer can advise you.
  • One year’s separation when the decision is mutual between spouses
  • Two years’ separation if one spouse is not consenting to the divorce.

*It is important to note that the grounds of separation do not usually affect a financial settlement.

Division of Assets:

In Scotland, when considering the division of assets, include only the assets acquired during the marriage. What you owned before you married is not normally included in the divorce settlement, which is the practice in England. This can often be confusing and a source of debate, so it is beneficial to have an experienced lawyer to fight your corner.

Children Under 16:

If you do have children, your lawyer can assist you in setting up custody and financial support arrangements. If spouses cannot agree on their own childcare contact arrangements, the courts will always look for the best outcome for the children. This is another reason to ensure you hire an experienced Family Law Solicitor. Their experience will be invaluable for your case and for the happiness of your family.

Family Law Solicitor, Sarah Hay, discusses child relocation following a divorce.

Divorce, Rent and Mortgages:

Joint and Several Liability: If a mortgage is in both names, both you and your ex-partner are still responsible for the mortgage payments. If one party stops paying, the other will be liable for the full amount.

If you are selling your family home or buying a new property, contact Watermans Estate Agency team on 0131 555 7055 or email us on [email protected]

In Scotland, you can apply for a Simplified Divorce if:

  • You have no children under the age of 16
  • You mutually agree on how you wish to divide your assets
  • If there are no financial matters requiring resolution
  • Both parties are in full control of their affairs and are not impaired by mental illness or a learning disability.
  • You have been mutually separated for one year or
  • Have been separated for two years if one spouse does not agree to the divorce.

*From the time of writing, an application for a Simplified Divorce costs £128 plus a £13+ Sheriff Officer’s fee. For more information on simplified divorces, click here.

Keep Calm:

Understandably, divorces can be high pressure situations. Trust your solicitor to do their job. This can be difficult, but your lawyer will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed. Alternatively, having a lawyer is to have someone on your side when communication breaks down between you and your ex-partner. They can be your spokesperson and will ensure you get the best outcome possible.

 

If you are separating from your partner and require legal guidance on divorce, contact Watermans on 0131 555 7055 or by using the form below.

Our Family Law specialists will guide you through the separation and divorce process. We offer straightforward legal advice, without the jargon, so that you know where you stand through each step of the process.

 

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Your first meeting with us

It's normal to be unsure of what to expect during your first meeting with a family law solicitor.
To help to prepare you for your first appointment, our Family Law team have answered some frequently asked questions below.

Your first meeting with us

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Our Family Law expert

“People often say to me that family law must be a depressing job – but I’ve never felt that. What we do makes a difference. I love working with my clients to understand their stories, help them work out where they want to get to, and collaborate with them to achieve their goals. Seeing people come through it and embark on a new stage of their lives is a great feeling.”

Dianne Millen, Head of Family Law