Family Issues

Whether married, cohabiting or separated, we offer help and advice on all areas of family problems and family breakdown. We aim to offer all our expertise built up over a combined 30 years plus, including:

  • big money relationships / no money relationships
  • complex child cases involving the local authority
  • parental disputes over where children live and when they see the other parent
  • harassment / severe domestic violence

As members of Resolution, a law society approved organisation of family law specialists, we strive to deal with all matters amicably whilst also ensuring your full protection under the law. We also have accredited specialists on the Law Society Family Law Panel.

Our firm holds four kite marks for quality standards with Investors in People, Lexcel, Conveyancing Quality Standard (CQS) and The Legal Aid Quality Mark Contract: so you can be assured of the very best help and advice.

“Fantastic, professional service from the Family team during a difficult and stressful time. I was kept calm and up to date throughout in relation to my divorce proceedings. They also negotiated a successful outcome in relation to my financial claims.”
 


Divorce

All divorces are based upon the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. That irretrievable breakdown is proven one of five ways:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion and two years having passed
  • Two years separation with the consent of both parties to divorce
  • Five years separation

On average a divorce will take five to six months if undefended, or up to nine months if defended.

According to 2016 national statistics, just over 2 in 5 marriages in England and Wales now end in divorce, so you must be aware of the best legal advice. We are confident that our legal team has both the knowledge and capacity to help you through this very difficult time. 
 


Finances

Most separations or divorces involve financial assets, be it the home, savings or pensions etc. There might be millions of pounds at stake, or just a few hundred.

In looking to address finance issues at marriage or relationship breakdown we believe there are essentially three options open to you.

  • You and your partner meet with a mediator to resolve the issues.
  • You can agree with your spouse either directly and/or with the help of your lawyer.
  • You can invite the courts to decide how your assets should be divided and whether maintenance should be paid.

Our team at Fiona Bruce solicitors can go through each of these options with you in detail to help find the best solution.
 

Children

Whether you are a mother, father, grand parent, other relative or child we can offer advice and help with all aspects of children disputes. This covers contact (access), residence (custody), injunctions, overseas custody disputes and parental responsibility.

Sometimes the local authority become involved in disputes over children, perhaps through allegations of mistreatment or abandonment. It is vital that you get the right help through these often complicated and emotional situations. As members of the Children Panel, Family Law panel and Resolution, you can be assured of our specialist help.


 

Mediation

Mediation can be an effective way for separating couples or parents in dispute over contact or residence to resolve their differences. Family mediation may help you resolve these matters or at least help you narrow the issues of dispute.

Mediation can often be the least expensive remedy for you. It can also help your marriage end more amicably, meaning you may end the relationship with better prospects of any agreements working effectively. With mediation you can still benefit from our expert advice as you go through the process. We can also limit the stress you may have by arranging mediation for you with local approved mediators. Feel free to contact us if you want any more information on mediation services.
 

Domestic Violence

We understand the package of support you require, and that urgency is often needed. We not only provide legal protection through the court – we also listen and help, and often refer to other organisations to work alongside you.

You have the right to live free from fear of violence or intimidation. We know that speaking to a solicitor can be daunting, but we aim to make it as easy as possible for you. 
 

Cohabitation

Whether married or not, separation can be a very stressful and difficult time. The law in relation to co-habitees is not the same as for married couples. We can advise on all aspects of the law, and with over 30 years’ experience within the family team, you can be assured of a thorough and efficient service.

Pre and Post Nuptial Agreements

Following the landmark decision in the case of Radmacher v Granatino in 2010, significant weight has been given toprenuptial agreements 

Prenuptial agreements are still not legally enforceable in England and Wales but increasing numbers of clients express an interest in these agreements, seeing the benefits they can provide by helping to minimise or remove acrimonious and sometimes expensive court proceedings.

We understand the importance of you having confidence in our up to date knowledge of the law, particularly in areas of significant specialism such as this. Our dedicated family lawyers, supported by extensive resources and experience will ensure that you receive best advice, every time.

 

Legal Aid

There’s no escaping the fact that advice from Solicitors will involve costs to you. There is a way of assisting you, should you currently be on a low income and with few assets — funding from the Legal Services Commission, often known as Legal Aid. We are now the largest Family Department in South Warrington (and one of the largest in Warrington) and we are happy to advise you as to how legal aid works and whether you will qualify.