The Long of it
What does a family lawyer do?
You probably never thought you’d find yourself talking to a family lawyer. You probably don’t really want to do so now.
But relationship breakdowns can happen to anyone. If it happens to you, it will be easier to sort out the kids, the house, and the finances if you know where you stand legally and have an expert on your team.
The decisions you make during this difficult time can affect the rest of your life, and a lot of the information out there on the internet and social media is misleading. What happened in your friend’s divorce might not be the best option for yours. Getting advice that’s tailored to your needs will save you money and hassle in the long run.
Our team is made up of experienced, practical, straight-talking family law experts. We will give you clear and straightforward advice on how the law affects your situation and we answer your questions. We will explain what approach we recommend for sorting things out, and how much it is likely to cost.
We won’t stir up conflict where there isn’t any, but we will fight your corner if we need to. And if you need to go to court, we know what to say – and what not to say, which is often just as important.
All along, you’ll be in control. It’s your life and you make the decisions. We won’t push you into doing anything. We see our work with you as a partnership. We are here to help you resolve a family dispute as quickly and cost-effectively as possible, so you can move forward with your life.
Family law services
What family law services do Watermans offer?
At Watermans, we work with you to get the best possible result, every time. We offer many different family law services. We’re not just here for you during times of hardship, we can also help you in happier times – perhaps you are thinking ahead about financial issues before moving in together or getting married, for example.
We offer advice on all kinds of family law issues, from separation and divorce to cohabitation and prenuptial agreements, child-related disputes, adoption and incapacity and guardianship issues. We are always here to make the process easier and more straightforward for you.
We work with you to understand what it is you want from your legal process, and help you every step of the way.
All along, you’ll be in control. It’s your life and you make the decisions. We won’t push you into doing anything. We see our work with you as a partnership.
We are here to help you resolve a family dispute as quickly and cost-effectively as possible so you can move forward with your life.
Who needs a family lawyer?
Do I need a family lawyer?
A family lawyer can act on your behalf to resolve any issue that relates to personal relationships, whether that’s separating from your partner, resolving a child-related dispute, or supporting a family member who can no longer make their own decisions.
We can help you to sort out what happens to your kids, finances, and living arrangements in the event of a relationship breakdown. We can also provide legal advice in happier times, such as if you are moving in together or getting married, or adopting a much-wanted child.
It’s always important to know where you stand in a relationship dispute, especially if there are children and property involved. There’s a lot of misinformation out there on social media and the like, and it’s always best to listen to the advice of an expert who’s focused on you and your needs.
If you are unsure of whether or not you need a family lawyer, speak to one of our dedicated team today.
Why should I choose Watermans as my family lawyers?
We’re experts in family law and we know our stuff – but we’re also normal people you can have a real conversation with. We don’t use legal jargon (or Latin), we give straightforward advice, and we won’t judge or patronise you. Coming from a range of backgrounds and with our own life experiences to draw on, we understand and empathise with how stressful family disputes can be. We know how important it is to trust your lawyer and that you need to know we’re in your corner. Our aim is to work in partnership with you to help resolve things quickly and cost-effectively, so you can move forward with your life.
Your first meeting with us
Coming to see a family lawyer can be a bit daunting – this is what to expect from your first meeting?
It’s normal to be a bit nervous before your first meeting with a family lawyer – and even if you feel confident, it doesn’t do any harm to know what to expect.
The process starts when you first get in touch. We can normally offer a fixed fee for an initial consultation with one of our specialist family lawyers, payable on the day of the meeting. We will agree this fee with you before we go any further. We will also need to check we haven’t acted for anyone else involved in the dispute (they won’t know we have done this).
If that’s all OK, we will then send you a link to a secure online verification system to carry out some compliance checks required by law. We will also ask you to fill out a short questionnaire collecting basic information such as the dates of marriage and separation. This saves time during our meeting and means we can get straight to the point.
If you’re being taken to court, we’ll usually ask you to scan the court papers over to us in advance. You may have received a solicitors’ letter and if so, it helps if we can see this beforehand too.
It’s a good idea to think through beforehand what questions you have and what you want to achieve from the meeting. For example, if you are separating, do you have any thoughts about how you’d like to resolve issues about your children or the house? What would a good outcome look like to you? What are your priorities? It’s OK if you don’t have answers yet, but it’s worth starting to reflect on this.
The meeting itself will be over secure video link or in person, with one of our specialist family lawyers. It’s unlikely we can resolve everything in a single session, but our goal is for you to come away knowing how the law applies to your situation, the options for sorting things out, and roughly what that might cost in legal fees. You can then make informed decisions about what to do next.
Please do not worry about getting emotional or not knowing exactly what to say. Family disputes are very personal and many people find it upsetting to talk about them. We understand and we won’t judge. And just to be clear, everything you tell us is completely confidential.
What happens after the meeting is up to you. We won’t take any action in your case or contact anyone else involved unless you tell us to do so.
If you have any questions about consulting a family lawyer or want to discuss a first meeting, please get in touch.
Get in touch with us
Everything we do at Watermans is about getting you the resolution you need and making that process straightforward. Start the process by sending us your details below or calling us on 0131 555 7055
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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