If you’re about to go through a divorce, you’ll almost certainly need a family lawyer to handle your divorce. However, how do you choose the right family lawyers in London? Depending on the circumstances of your divorce, you’ll need to take different things into consideration, such as whether there are children involved, or whether your marriage has been abusive.
A divorce is far from the only time when you might need a family lawyer. Perhaps you’re starting a new life with your partner, either through marriage or cohabitation, and you want to draw up a contract or arrangement that will keep both of your assets protected in the event of something going wrong.
Talk to plenty of family lawyers in London — don’t choose the first you talk to
There are a few methods to finding the contact details of the best family lawyers in London. You can take to Google, of course, or you can ask around and get recommendations from your family and friends. With London being the divorce capital of the world, it’s almost certain that you know a few people who have been down this road already.
Every case is different and no two divorces are the same, so word of mouth recommendations are only useful to a certain point. Meet with at least three London divorce solicitors before deciding which to go with, and make sure they’re registered with Legal 500, the leading guide to law firms in the UK. Not all of us can afford to put together a super-team of top lawyers in the way the Angelina Jolie is currently doing in the Pitt-Jolie divorce, so it’s important that you invest intelligently in someone you trust. One of the most important factors is that you feel you can communicate with your solicitor; that you understand what they are telling you, and that you feel they understand what you are telling them.
If you’re putting together a pre-nuptial agreement or cohabitation agreement, you also want to talk to a few different lawyers. With the laws around pre-nuptial agreements constantly changing, especially the laws surrounding same-sex marriages, you want to make sure you choose a lawyer who is experienced and up to date in handling these matters.
Find someone with the right kind of experience
A couple of key questions to ask the family lawyers in London you meet include:
- How long have they been practising for?
- What sort of cases they usually handle?
Even if you hit it off at a personal level, if the family lawyer in question specialises in estate management and division of assets, they may not be the best equipped for arranging access to children after a divorce.
Another thing to consider is the fee and hourly retainer. Divorce, especially if it drags out for a while, can be an expensive process. If you hire family lawyers in London, make sure you’re realistic about what you can afford. You don’t want to have to close early just because you’ve run out of money. There are litigation loan providers who offer loans to fund your litigation but they come at a cost. Make sure you discuss these with your lawyer as an alternative to funding the litigation. Before you go for your first meeting, make sure it’s a free assessment or you could be stung with a hefty bill.
A family lawyer is also highly important for drawing up legal arrangements. When you meet your solicitor for the first time, make sure they’re the best family lawyer in London for your particular case, so you’ll come out with a fair agreement and arrangement that both you and your partner are happy with.
Make sure you get on and have an understanding
You need to make sure you have a clear head when you’re talking to potential solicitors. Look for red flags, like whether they’re just telling you what they think you want to hear. As you may be emotional at the first meeting, it’s worth making notes about the key aspects of your case so you don’t forget anything.
Although a divorce solicitor needs to be sympathetic to your case, they’re not there to be your counsellor or friend. Their job is to help you get out of your marriage fairly, and with what you rightfully deserve. Divorce can be an emotional and traumatic time for all parties, so it’s also worth seeking the help of a therapist to ensure you come out of this tough time mentally healthier, ready to start your new life.
For effective legal services come and talk to KMJ Solicitors, one of the best family law firms in the heart of London. A legal 500 registered law firm, we have experience handling complicated and delicate legal situations with sensitivity, tailoring our service to every individual’s needs.