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Top Ten Tips on how to have an Amicable Divorce

Monday, December 21, 2015

As the New Year approaches, many of us begin to question how happy we are in our lives and in particular our marriages.  If you are in the process of separating and choose to separate or divorce, Kerry Rowell of our matrimonial team offers some tips on how to keep things amicable.

  1. Remember that both of you are grieving the loss of the relationship and that no two people grieve the same way.  Respect each other’s feelings and this will form the foundation stone of your divorce or separation.  If an apology is required at any point give it at the earliest opportunity.
  2. Appoint a solicitor as soon as possible.  An experienced family solicitor who understands your aims and wishes is vital in any divorce, and in doing so can limit emotional confrontations between you.  Involving them at the outset means that you will be guided immediately on the best way to keep things amicable with your ex-partner. 
  3. Do not involve your children in your divorce or separation.  As adults, children will gain a perspective on why your marriage ended, and as children they do not need to be burdened with these adult issues.
  4. Remember that children love their parents equally.  Do not make negative comments about each other or force them to ‘take sides.’
  5. According to the law, it is the best interests of the children which come first in proceedings before the Court.  No parent has more of a claim over time with their children than the other.  All parents are equal.  One parent asserting and demanding their own wishes over arrangements for children, without the agreement of the other parent, can cause irrevocable damage to your relationship not only with your ex-partner but also with your children.
  6. Keep communications between you positive.  Walk away from any communications which become confrontational.  If you feel aggrieved about an issue, discuss it with your solicitor who should be able to offer a balanced view, appropriate support and advice.
  7. Issue divorce proceedings at the earliest opportunity after you have decided that there is no possibility of reconciling the marriage. This may sound harsh but it provides each of you with certainty, and to some extent the children that the marriage is at an end and you can each move on with your lives.  We find this reduces, for example, resentment.
  8. Resolve financial matters as swiftly as possible and be guided by your solicitor on what is a reasonable financial settlement.  You will need to remain flexible to achieve this.
  9. Make financial information available to each other as soon as possible.  Your solicitor will tell you what information is required and then negotiate on your behalf or assist you in doing so, so as to reduce any opportunity for conflict.
  10. Remember whenever possible that the ending of a marriage can also be the beginning of a new life. Stay positive.  The way you feel will change, ask your solicitor.  They’ve been through it before, with lots of people just like you and do understand.         

Kerry Comments “By following these tips wherever possible, you really can achieve an amicable separation and hopefully reduce the inevitable conflict caused when people separate.”

If you have any queries relating to this or any other family or matrimonial issues then please contact Kerry Rowell or Averil Ballam on 01603 666001.