Divorce Solicitors

At JCP Solicitors we understand that going through a divorce can be a very unsettling and challenging point in your life, especially when there are children and/or money involved. So, let us take the weight off your shoulders. Get in touch with our specialist divorce solicitors to arrange your first advice appointment. It is as simple as that.

We understand the stress and uncertainty which commonly arises when two people who may have spent years or even decades living together decide to separate. It is very easy for contentious issues to quickly arise in relation to childcare and the fair division of money and assets, sometimes leading to a drawn out litigation which negatively effects the entire family.

Our goal at JCP Solicitors is to make your divorce and any financial claims as smooth and stress free as possible. Providing you with sensitive but practical advice about your options and helping you avoid conflict wherever possible.

We will try to negotiate your divorce and financial matters as amicably as possible, helping divorcing couples come to a realistic arrangement with minimal disagreement, thereby allowing the family to avoid having to resort to expensive and stressful court proceedings for a decision.

Where it is necessary to go to court, which is always a last resort, we will fight vigorously to uphold your legal rights and achieve an outcome which is positive for you.

For further information, please contact our friendly team today.

  • Jill Bulteel
      • 02920 855261
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  • Angela Killa
      • 01267 248893
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  • Rebecca Bates
      • 01792 525 576
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  • Philippa Buckland
      • 01792 525409
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  • Claire Davies
      • 01792 529657
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  • Rachel Powell
      • 01267 248 887
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  • Laurie Taylor
      • 02920 855262
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  • Sharon Jones
      • 01267 248890
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  • Beverley-Anne Owen
      • 01792 525 416
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What our divorce solicitors can do to assist you

Our understanding and caring team can offer appointments to you and your family across the whole of South and West Wales.

Many people are opting for telephone or zoom appointments, which can in many circumstances be more convenient. This can take place from the comfort of your own home and avoid the need for any travel or time out of work.  

We also offer face to face appointments, so if a face to face appointment is preferable for you and your circumstances please get in touch. Whichever type of appointment you choose, it will always be dealt with as sensitively and efficiently as we possibly can.

Our divorce team have an extensive experience and knowledge of the legal procedures and issues surrounding divorce and finances and a strong track record of achieving positive results which enables our clients to move forward with their lives with confidence. Our advice has to be open, honest and realistic, so each client can make a decision with regards to what will suit them best moving forward, being armed with all the relevant legal advice.

Our divorce and finance solicitor fees

We understand that it is really hard to know what service you actually require from a family law solicitor. So we offer a fixed price first meeting for a discounted rate of £150 + VAT for initial advice so you can find out where you stand and what your next steps would be.

Once you have met with us for your first appointment for general advice, we can establish what you will need from us. It is likely we can give you a cost estimation for the divorce and finance process early on, but please be aware that every case is different and things can change as the case progresses.

We will do our best to be as transparent as we possibly can and you will be kept up to date on a regular basis as to how costs are progressing and the likelihood of any change.

What is included in our divorce and financial service?

We have a tried and tested process for approaching divorce which we will tailor according to your individual needs. Our service includes:

  • Your case conducted from start to finish by a specialist solicitor
  • Unlimited access to advice on issues such as:-
  • All the divorce paperwork would be prepared for you and filed with the court on your behalf
  • Advice on all court documentation received from the court on your behalf
  • Advice on arrangements for your children
  • Advice on child maintenance
  • Where required, conduct of a court case relating to your children
  • Advice concerning how to deal with assets, income and liabilities within the course of the divorce/financial proceedings
  • Conduct of negotiations over financial matters with your spouse or their solicitor
  • A referral to the mediation service in the event that negotiations are not successful
  • Drafting a consent order to record a financial agreement and filing that with the court. Dealing with any queries that the court has about the agreement
  • Where an agreement cannot be reached and mediation is not successful, conducing a financial court case on your behalf and dealing with all court documentation for you and representation
  • Implementing a court/consent order to include arranging the implementation of pension sharing orders, undertaking matrimonial conveyancing for any properties involved and dividing assets
  • Keeping you updated throughout the process, advising you of any steps that should be taken following your divorce

Divorce petitions

We have substantial experience in preparing and submitting divorce petitions on behalf of our clients. We can also defend divorce proceedings brought by your spouse if you do not want to divorce or you do not agree with their reasons. Each case is different, so the appropriate advice will be given before any decision is made with regards to defended proceedings.

To get divorced you must:

  • Be in a marriage which is legally recognised in the UK
  • Be permanently resident in the UK or the permanent home of your spouse
  • Be married for at least one year
  • Satisfy the ground for divorce that your marriage has irretrievably broken down (please note that the divorce laws are due to change in April 2022 and further details will be given below).

As the law currently stands, to satisfy the ground for divorce, that being irretrievable breakdown of the marriage, you must satisfy the court that one of the following five reasons apply

  1. Adultery
  2. Unreasonable behaviour
  3. Desertion
  4. Separation of two years where both parties agree that there should be divorce
  5. Separation of five years, consent of the other party is not required

Rule changes in April 2022 – No fault divorce. What is this?

This is where there is no requirement to prove any wrongdoing by one of the parties in order to obtain your divorce. The ‘blame game’, often been considered out dated will no longer exist. The changes are said to come into place in April 2022. The sole ground of the irretrievable breakdown will still remain, but there will be no need for a party to establish one of the five facts to prove that the marriage has in fact broken down. It will allow parties to apply to the court for a divorce jointly should they wish to do so. A party can apply on their own if the other partner does not agree. The rule changes will remove the ability of the responding spouse to contest any application. These changes will also apply to civil partners looking to dissolve their civil partnerships. The process is set to take around 26 weeks. You must have been married or in a civil partnership for a minimum of 1 year before an application can be made.

Financial matters

Deciding how to divide and separate your finances is often very overwhelming and one of the most frustrating aspects of divorce, particularly where couples have complex financial affairs involving things such as spousal maintenance, joint property, investments and family businesses.

Our divorce and finance solicitors are highly proficient at handling financial matters. Our goal is to help couples make their arrangements calmly and cooperatively in the course of the proceedings, so by the time the divorce is finalised, you will be free to start moving on with your life independently.

If negotiations do not run as smoothly as we hope, then the matter would be referred to a mediation service, where an independent body would assist you and your spouse in trying to negotiate matters amicably.

If mediation is not successful, you then have a period of four months within which to make an application to the court for financial relief, essentially putting the matter in the hands of the court. This is always a last resort and can be costly and time consuming. At JCP we will do everything we can in order to avoid litigation. If, however, this is the only option to resolve your matter, we will deal with it as swiftly and efficiently as we possibly can.

Arrangements for children

We understand that ensuring the stability of your children’s lives are not upended by the divorce is likely to be one of your greatest priorities. We will keep your children’s best interests at heart throughout your case, as will the court, especially during discussions about child care and support arrangements.

As with all divorce matters, we heavily recommend that families seek to resolve any issues or disputes involving arrangements for children using alternative dispute resolution such as family mediation to avoid the cost and the stress of having to go to court.

Any agreement you come to informally or through using alternative dispute resolution can be made formal by applying to the court for a consent order. Therefore, there is no need to worry about your partner refusing to comply with the agreement in the future, allowing stability for your family.

Our expertise includes:-

  • Contact arrangements, including deciding which parent a child will live with and how often they spend time with the other parent
  • Child maintenance arrangements, including discussions for one off payments and ongoing support
  • Child name changes

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), sometimes referred to as conflict resolution, is a term which describes methods of resolving legal matters and disputes without going to court. Court proceedings are often time consuming, expensive, stressful and naturally adversarial, often encouraging conflict between divorcing couples. Therefore, the goal of ADR is to help families avoid the process altogether. In fact, most couples are now required to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting, referred to as a MIAM, before being able to start court proceedings to establish whether the matter can be resolved through mediation first. As previously confirmed, court is always a last resort.

Family Mediation

Family mediation involves attending a meeting or series of meetings with your former partner to discuss divorce related matters under the guidance and supervision of a qualified mediator.

The mediator will encourage and facilitate your negotiations but will not provide advice or tell you what to do, that would be for your legal advisor to do following on from any mediation appointments.

Any agreement you come to during mediation can later be made legal in the form of a consent order lodged at court. You will not need to attend court if your consent order has been agreed. It is simply prepared by one of the party’s solicitors, both parties will need to check and sign it and then it is lodged with the court administratively. The court will then write back if they are satisfied that the order should be made and provide you with a final copy. Sometimes the court have queries in relation to consent orders and your legal representative can respond to the court with any issues raised.

At JCP we do not offer a mediation service, but we can sign post you to experts in the local area who can assist you.

Why choose our divorce lawyers in Wales?

At JCP we provide specialist legal service to families across England and Wales and we pride ourselves on our dynamic approach to family law cases, helping our clients find a pragmatic and realistic solution to divorce matters whilst diffusing any potential for conflict.

The law society has also recognised our family law skills via the following accreditations:-

  • Family Law Advanced – for our expertise in complex family law cases involving aspects such as private children law, child abduction, domestic violence, international issues and complex assets
  • Children Law – signifying our experience and proficiency in representing children’s best interests during family law proceedings;
  • We support and apply the principles of Resolution, an organisation that promotes alternative dispute resolution as a best means for resolving family law cases as smoothly and painlessly as possible

JCP Solicitors in independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Divorce frequently asked questions

How much does a divorce cost?

Every case is different. There is a court fee payable to start the divorce process. This fee is currently £550 but due to increase to £592 in the autumn of 2021.

Once we have established how your case is likely to progress we will be in a better position to advise on likely costs. Whether the case is contested or not will have a bearing on the fees you pay (depending on your circumstances, you may be eligible for either fee remission or a reduction in the court fee. We can assess this based upon the income that you receive).

How long does a divorce take?

Again, every case is different and this will depend on various factors. We would usually suggest a period of 3-6 months but it will depend on your individual circumstances and if financial matters need to be dealt with.

Who gets custody of a child in divorce proceedings?

Arrangements for children are dealt with separately to the divorce and it is always hoped that parties can agree the arrangements between themselves without recourse to court proceedings. 

How do I start divorce proceedings?

The application can be drafted and submitted in paper form, but more commonly the application is dealt with online via the HMCTS website.

How will I get divorced if my spouse refuses?

This depends on what fact you are relying upon for the divorce and whether your spouse either ignores the paper work, or formally seeks to defend the case. Each case will turn on its own facts so individual advice would be needed, tailored to your particular circumstances. 

How long do I have to be separated before I can get divorced?

There is no specified time scale, however, you must be married for at least 1 year before you can start the divorce process.

How can I protect my pension?

The issue of pensions will arise when negotiating your financial settlement.

What am I entitled to in divorce proceedings?

The court will take into consideration the criteria set out in S25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 when deciding how best to distribute the assets in a case.  Every case is different, but the court will pay consideration to the principles set out in S25 and also carefully consider all of the assets in the case and the needs of the parties/children.

Get in touch with our divorce solicitors in Wales

We have a strong presence within South East Wales and South West Wales, with local offices in:

Our understanding and caring team can offer appointments to you and your family across the whole of South and West Wales, whether it be by way of telephone, zoom or face to face appointments as we are slowly returning to our offices.

We have dedicated family law solicitors in all of our offices in Swansea, Caerphilly, Cardiff, Carmarthen, Cowbridge, Fishguard, Haverfordwest and St Davids.

Get in touch with us today by giving us a call, emailing us at law@jcpsolicitors.co.uk or filling in our online enquiry form.