CORONAVIRUS UPDATE APRIL 2021

A message to our clients:

With the recent move to allow shops and offices to fully re-open, we will continue to review our policy on clients attending our offices. Currently, we are not inviting clients into the office but we are able to briefly meet with clients by appointment at the door of the office. Please note that face coverings are still required indoors until further notice. We remain committed to following the Government guidelines as rules continue to change in line with the easing of lockdown.

We continue to operate our business as usual across all the services that we offer our clients, both current and prospective.

We continue to offer teleconference-based or telephone consultations.. We are aware that not everyone has been offered full vaccination yet and understand that some people may feel safer continuing with socially distanced communications.

Our family and wills / probate solicitors continue to offer initial advice remotely by video conferencing and by telephone for up to one hour (as advertised on this website). Please call us if you would like to speak to one of our experts.

If you have a case in court, please telephone us so we can discuss representation.

We appreciate your patience, support and understanding over the past year since the restrictions related to the pandemic began. We hope you continue to stay safe, and wish you a brighter 2021!

Talk to a solicitor today 0117 973 1391

Battrick Clark Solicitors of Bristol are experienced divorce lawyers who can provide expert legal advice on all matters relating to divorce or legal separation.

In our experience, the two main challenges facing people who are embarking on a divorce or separation are emotional stress and financial concerns.

This is why at Battrick Clark we:

  • explain and guide you through each stage of the process
  • offer a broad range of services to help you and your ex-partner resolve financial issues
  • facilitate round-table meetings between spouses and their lawyers to try to achieve the best possible outcome.

We can’t stop separation being a difficult process, but we will do everything we can to make it as straightforward as possible.

Grounds for Divorce

To obtain a decree of divorce or judicial separation, one or both spouses must be habitually resident in England or Wales and have been so for one year or more. The petitioner must prove to the court that the marriage has broken down irretrievably by proving one of the following facts:

  • Adultery
  • Unreasonable behaviour
  • Desertion
  • Two years’ separation (with consent)
  • Five years’ separation (without consent)

Evidence of adultery or unreasonable behaviour cannot be used if the spouses have continued to live together for more than six months after becoming aware of the adultery; and periods of separation must be continuous. Around 70% of divorce petitioners cite adultery or unreasonable behaviour.

The process of divorce and judicial separation has two stages – Decree Nisi (granted when the grounds of the petition have been established) and Decree Absolute (the final decree – normally made when finance and property issues have been resolved). If you change your mind, the process can be halted at any time before decree absolute.

People who cannot divorce because of religious or social reasons often use judicial separation. If you have a decree absolute in judicial separation proceedings, you are not free to re-marry.

If you don’t want to divorce immediately, then you can sort out the finances by way of a Separation Deed. You both need to agree as to how the matrimonial assets are to be divided. The terms of your agreement will usually be incorporated into a final financial order of the court upon divorce.

We offer a broad range of services to help you and your ex-partner resolve financial issues. Whatever your financial circumstances, we help you to arrive at the best possible outcome. We can refer you and your ex-partner to mediation provided that you are both willing. We recommend full financial disclosure of both joint and solely held assets, and help you to negotiate a satisfactory settlement. We facilitate round-table meetings between spouses and their lawyers so as to avoid costly litigation through the courts. If all else fails, we will support and represent you through the court process. In our experience, most disputes settle long before a final hearing arrives, giving you and your ex-partner control over what is to happen to the family assets.

If you are worried that your ex-partner is disposing of assets, then we can protect those assets by obtaining freezing orders or restricting the dealings in property. Whatever the dilemma, we can offer a comprehensive legal remedy.

How does the divorce process work?

One of the first questions we are asked is usually about timings: how long does a divorce take? This of course depends on individual circumstances (for example, whether children are involved, or whether both parties support the divorce). A straightforward case can be completed within 4-6 months – and while we support the timely completion of proceedings, Battrick Clark always makes it a priority to strive for a lasting and sustainable solution.

The cost of privately funded cases, like the timescale, will depend on their complexity. Battrick Clark will provide you with a rough guide to the overall cost at the outset. And we can offer significantly discounted hourly rates if you are on a low income, and have little or no savings.

The situation regarding Legal Aid has changed since April 2013. The majority of people who would previously have qualified for support are now no longer eligible. You will now qualify if:

  • you can produce a letter from your GP / Consultant to show that you are experiencing psychological / emotional harm and / or domestic abuse
  • your ex-partner has been convicted of an assault against you within the last 24 months, or has been recently charged with such an offence
  • you can show that there is a risk to a child’s safety and well-being.

Alongside these requirements, all Legal Aid applicants will still have to be financially eligible for the scheme.

If you would like to find out more about how Battrick Clark can help you with divorce and separation proceedings, please Contact us today.

You may also like to learn about our fixed-fee divorce service.

What happens to my will if I get married or divorced or remarry?

Click here to find out more about how changes in marital status affect your will

Family Law Testimonials

I couldn’t ask for more.
I used Lynda Merrell-Jones for my divorce and she was absolutely amazing. Prompt, sensible, clear advice was provided for two years. I cannot recommend them enough!

Lee Mill

When you need a solicitor, you want to know that you have one that you can trust. With Lynda Merrell-Jones I knew I had one of the best. She was honest, quick to respond, very knowledgeable and very sensible. I very rarely write reviews, but Lynda really does care, so I would highly recommend her.

Neil Madeley

Used Battrick Clark for both my partner’s divorce and conveyancing when we recently moved – were great on both occasions.

Suzy Perry

Lynda Merrell-Jones has proven on numerous occasions that investing in professional legal advice is priceless. Some of the comments here reflect the frustrations of having to pay for legal advice and anyone of us can appreciate the pressures finding these funds place upon us. However, when you’re protecting children, home or family it’s an investment that provides peace of mind and validation that you’re serious in your endeavours to protect these precious people. On behalf of myself and family, thank you.

Lisa J Green

Lynda Merrell-Jones was fantastic in how she handled my divorce case.
There was no question unanswered (and I had many) and she gave me realistic advice on what I could expect.
I couldn’t recommend her more.

Elisa Tunks

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