Kiteleys Solicitors

Kiteleys Solicitors. 7 St. Stephen's Court, 15-17 St. Stephen's Road, Bournemouth, Dorset. BH2 6LA. Telephone 01425 278866.
Kiteleys Solicitors is the trading style of Kiteleys Solicitors Limited registered in England and Wales, registered number 03113721. VAT Registration No: 658 8813 79.
This firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. A list of directors is available for inspection at our registered office.

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At Kiteleys we are a team of experienced solicitors, all very enthusiastic about our own specialist areas of the law.

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DIY Divorce – a false economy?

15th July 2013

DIY Divorce – a false economy?

Recent reports in the British Media suggests that up to 1 in 5 divorces are now being processed entirely online, with more people than ever before using App’s via smart-phones and tablets to initiate divorce proceedings.  In part, this might be due to cuts in legal aid which came into effect from 1st  April 2013, meaning that legal aid is no longer available to pay for the costs of a divorce unless there is sufficient evidence of recent domestic abuse being suffered.

 

Colin Mitchell, specialist family law solicitor and head of Kiteleys Family Solutions team, gives his opinion on what this means in practice and highlights some hidden risks of dealing with divorce in this way:

Whilst dealing with your own divorce might seem to make sense, because you can avoid solicitors legal costs whilst acting “in person”, it is essential to realise that getting divorced does not properly deal with any financial arrangements between a divorcing couple.  This is because the grant of “decree absolute” means that  a couple are no longer married, but does not prevent someone from making a financial claim against their ex-spouse.

 

This legal technicality came as  a big shock to Nigel Page when in  2010 he won £56million in the Euro Millions Jackpot.   Although this happened about 10 years after his divorce from Wendy Page, Nigel had failed to include a full and final financial settlement in the appropriate legally binding document at the time of getting divorced from Wendy.  This meant that in the circumstances of their particular case, Wendy was entitled to make a very significant claim against Nigel’s winnings a decade later after reading about his win in the newspapers.

Therefore, whilst dealing with your divorce yourself, perhaps using an online service, might seem a good option because it is cheap, you should always bear in mind that you only get what you pay for. This means that without full and proper legal advice, there might be legal “loose ends” which cause you heartache and financial loss in the future.

Making sure that you have proper professional help to avoid these problems does not mean great expense.  Any family problem, whether involving a married or unmarried couple, can still be resolved in a full and proper way at a price which is affordable.  This is especially true  if you obtain help from a specialist family lawyer who knows when it is best to involve other professionals to help solve your family problem,  which will help keep your solicitors costs to a minimum.  These other options might include a referral to a Family Mediator or Relationship Consultant, in order to avoid going to court and help an agreement be reached without incurring expensive solicitors fees.  This holistic approach to family problem solving is at the forefront of Kiteleys Family Solutions team’s philosophy for helping couples achieve the best outcome for the best price for them.

 

If you have any questions following on from this blog or in relation to any other family issue, call Colin Mitchell for a free no obligation chat on 01425 278866.

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Kiteleys Solicitors. 40 Haven Road, Canford Cliffs, Poole, Dorset. BH13 7LP. Telephone 01425 278866.
Kiteleys Solicitors is the trading style of Kiteleys Solicitors Limited registered in England and Wales, registered number 03113721. VAT Registration No: 658 8813 79.
This firm is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, SRA ID 401309. A list of directors is available for inspection at our registered office.