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How to choose the best divorce lawyer for your needs

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The question “How to choose a divorce lawyer?” is one that is sadly asked every day, in London and across the UK. The best divorce lawyer is one that will not only understand you and your situation, but be able to provide practical, and often emotional, support as you go through what is generally of high net worth divorces, or you need someone who can advise on divorce and Immigration because your Immigration status in the UK is related to your marriage, working out how to choose a divorce lawyer takes on even more significance.

Make sure the divorce lawyers in London you are considering are registered, regulated and insured correctly

Anyone who googles ‘divorce lawyers near me’ will undoubtedly be baffled by the range of services on offer. While it may be tempting to look for a ‘cheap option’ there are a number of problems that could arise for someone going through a divorce without the right legal assistance. A solicitor will be registered with the Law Society and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Check that the divorce law solicitors you are considering have these registrations, and that they have Professional Indemnity Insurance.

Consider using divorce law solicitors who are members of Resolution

Resolution is a UK wide group of family lawyers who agree to a code of conduct which promotes a less confrontational approach to divorce. Many London divorce lawyers are members of Resolution. While the popular image of the divorce lawyer is of someone fighting for their client in court, it has been recognised for some time that taking a less confrontational approach can lead to far better outcomes for both sides in a divorce. It is particularly important to consider this is a divorce which involves children. It is important that the parents can continue to communicate after their break up so that they can best meet the needs of their children. Finalising your divorce through mediation or collaborative law approaches can also offer couples more flexibility to agree arrangements that are more suited to their situation. A Resolution member is more likely to adopt a non-confrontational approach from the outset, with a view to achieving the best settlement for you. Of course, if this does not work, perhaps because your former partner will not agree to take this approach, court hearings may be the only option available.

Understand the costs of divorce

Different solicitors will charge different rates to handle a divorce, so it’s important to understand what those charges are. There are fixed court fees associated with divorce, even if you intend to resolve your arrangements through mediation, but the necessary documentation that needs to be completed is available free from the courts, so beware of internet divorce companies offering to sell a divorce document pack to you. It’s worth bearing in mind that using some form of alternative dispute resolution, rather than going to court, is likely to impact favourably on the costs of your divorce. Choosing a divorce solicitor purely on the basis of their costs and charges is unlikely to lead to the best outcome – it’s important to establish whether you can trust your divorce lawyer to delver the best result for you, given your particular circumstances.

Make sure your divorce lawyer understands your specific issues at the outset of the process

While you are going through the process of choosing a divorce lawyer, it’s important to mention any key issues that need to be taken into account. If you are in a situation in which your Immigration status will change as a result of your divorce, it is important that you discuss this with your divorce solicitor. Ideally, you need to instruct someone experienced in divorce and Immigration law. At the same time as resolving your divorce, a divorce and Immigration solicitor can be taking steps to help you resolve any Immigration or nationality issues that need to be addressed. You may have specific priorities in relation to your children, or to some other aspect of the relationship that you are leaving. Make sure you choose a divorce solicitor who understands your issues and who has the expertise to deal with them effectively.

Ask for recommendations

Asking a friend to recommend a divorce lawyer may seem a bit unusual, but it’s a sensible step to take when you are considering how to choose a divorce lawyer. divorce is now relatively common, and you are likely to have acquaintances, friends or relatives who have been through divorce, and will have had different experiences with their divorce lawyer. Whether a divorce lawyer is right for you will still be your decision, but if someone you know has had a positive (or, perhaps more importantly, a negative) experience with a particular divorce lawyer, this is worth taking into consideration.

For most people, the decision to go ahead with a divorce is one that is taken after much thought and consideration – so it’s logical to spend some time choosing your divorce lawyer. Don’t be afraid to contact several divorce solicitors and ask them questions about how they will handle your situation before making a decision.

OTS Solicitors are divorce lawyers with experience in all aspects of divorce including high net worth divorce, and the complications of Immigration status following divorce. Our divorce lawyers are members of Resolution and we advocate a non-confrontational approach to divorce where possible. To book an appointment with Behzad Sharmin to discuss your situation, please call us, in confidence, on 0203 959 9123.

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