Family law solicitors perform an important job, but not everyone is aware of how they can help. Here are 10 scenarios when you may need them to provide advice and support.
1. People rightly dread divorce proceedings, but they needn't be as stressful as you might think. If you've come to the unfortunate conclusion that the marriage is over, either together or on your own, or if your partner has made the decision, then getting legal support will help you make sense of everything that's going to happen and what you need to do.
2. Where children are involved in a marriage or relationship that comes to an end, decisions will need to be made regarding custody. For this, you may require a legal professional to help draw up agreements. Or, if your soon to be former spouse is denying you access, you will need a solicitor to help you in your battle for custody.
3. If you live with someone but aren't married, there may still be a number of important decisions to make. Both parties have rights in these situations, especially where property or children are concerned, so legal support could be needed to sort everything out.
4. Property issues are a major issue when it comes to relationships ending, as are problems relating to possessions in the home, so if there are things that need to be split or sold, a family law solicitor may be exactly what is needed.
5. When it comes to children, it isn't just the parents that may have custody issues to contend with. In some situations, grandparents may be stopped from seeing their grandchildren. They too have rights, so it could be worth seeking advice if this has happened to you.
6. If you are in a civil partnership that has come to end or is just beginning, you may want to know what your legal responsibilities and rights are. Speak to a solicitor to find out and make any necessary provisions.
7. In any relationship, when it ends there is a possibility that someone's lifestyle may change significantly. Where this is concerned, you may be entitled to more than you think. Likewise, if you may be being fought over finances that you have earned and need legal advice on what is legally expected of you.
8. To safeguard against many of the issues discussed above, you may want to go into a marriage with protocol in place for what would happen in the event of a break-up. A family law solicitor can help draw up pre-marital agreements to outline what you would both want to happen if things didn't go to plan.
9. Victims of domestic abuse may not know where to turn for help. The answer to that may be a family solicitor. They can help you escape your situation, seek new accommodation, untraceable phone lines and other forms of protection that may be necessary to help you rebuild your life.
10. If you've decided that you want to move in with your significant other, you may want to learn more about cohabitation laws before you progress any further. You could also be in the situation of wanting to move into a property that your partner pays the mortgage on and want to know how everything will work financially.
Where any of these situations are happening, speaking to a family law solicitor can help you make the right decisions and protect both yours and your children's best interests.