London is a busy city with a long, interesting and sometimes sad history of divorce
London is home to nearly nine million people, is nearly 2,000 years old, and has been a major seat of power for the Romans, the Anglo-Saxons, the Tudors, and the Victorians alike. With all those people going through so much political and financial stress for almost two millennia, it’s no wonder that there have been so many famous divorce lawyers in London. Here’s a quick look and the three best divorce lawyers in London.
3. The Divorce That Changed the Course of History — Henry VIII
No discussion of the history of divorce in London would be complete without mentioning Henry VIII. After all, his divorce from Catherine of Aragon in the 16th Century was the reason that England turned from a Catholic country into a Protestant country.
While the Protestant Reformation was happening over the rest of Europe, Henry VIII had successfully — and violently — quelled the murmurs of a similar revolution in England. He was absolutely opposed to Protestantism. That is, of course, until he wanted a divorce.
After a letter to the Pope asking for a divorce within the Catholic church was rejected, Henry VIII formed the Church of England. He then divorced Catherine of Aragon and married Anne Boleyn within this new church. The result of this messy and monumental divorce was an influx of Protestant immigration to the UK, a break with the Catholic Church in Rome, and a new religion.
While Henry may not have been a legal expert by any stretch of the imagination, he deserves a mention as one of the best divorce lawyers London has ever seen for his sheer tenacity and his divorce’s enormous influence on the course of history.
Who else but the man with six wives would have had the gall to fundamentally change the country just so he could remarry? Henry VIII’s wild actions don’t need to be respected by any means, but they were effective and remain a damned impressive example of political recklessness nearly 500 years later.
In many senses, Henry VIII will be remembered as the worst — rather than the best — divorce lawyer in London. However, in terms of achieving his goals within the law at all costs, there’s a case for labelling in the best divorce lawyer in London’s history
2. Divorce as a Women’s Rights Issue — Caroline Norton
Like so much else in history, the history of divorce has treated women quite unfairly. So, while men like Henry VIII could do as they pleased when it came to marriage, women — even powerful and wealthy women — could not do the same.
That all changed when Caroline Norton successfully became the first women to divorce her husband through an impassioned letter to Queen Victoria herself. Norton’s campaign for a woman’s right to divorce their husband directly led to the Matrimonial Causes Act of 1857. Not only did Norton’s campaigning and the resulting law open up divorce for women, but it also helped the less wealthy — both men and women — to obtain divorces as well.
However, Norton did not stop with the 1857 act. She was also instrumental in developing and campaigning for a law concerning childcare arrangements. The Custody of Infants Act of 1839 introduced the term “custody” to British law and gave mothers the right to ask for the legal custody of children up to the age of seven as well as several other important rights. Seven years before her death, the Married Women’s Property Act of 1870 was passed and many attribute its success to her work.
Unlike Henry VIII, Norton was a legal expert and a passionate legal reformer. Her legacy as one of the best divorce lawyers in London’s history is cemented by an influence on the law which — though it isn’t as influential as Henry VIII’s — is inarguably much more positive.
1. The Best Divorce Lawyers in London? — KMJ Solicitors
To say we are the best divorce lawyers London has ever seen is quite the claim, but we stand by it. Unlike Norton and Henry VIII, we have the benefit of hundreds of years of hindsight. That’s why we are able to specialise in cohabitation agreements, childcare arrangements, and divorce settlements the likes of which Norton or Henry VIII would have never known.
Even in the 21st Century, our family law firm remains unrivalled. We made the Legal 500 Family Law rankings because of our successful work with a wide variety of legal challenges. What’s more, we are the best divorce lawyers in London because of our history of influencing British family law for the better with landmark cases. The history of divorce in London continues to be written and we are happy to be a positive force on it.