A question which is asked frequently and one which depends to some extent on the complexity of the issues and more importantly the attitudes of the divorcing parties.
When the Christmas cheer does not continue into the New Year – the festive period and January can be a difficult time of year for families. Couples who have already separated may have had issues in relation to agreeing Christmas contact arrangements with both parents wishing to spend Christmas morning with their children. In addition with lots of family gatherings and pressure to get the perfect present it can lead to financial and emotional strain on a couples relationship and for some the end of the Christmas period seems an appropriate time for a new start to the New Year as they look to make plans to separate or divorce.
Setting out the cost of the divorce procedure is a fairly straight forward issue but it is the additional issues alongside the actual divorce process such as resolving the financial matters and on occasion the arrangements for the children which can take a case from being relatively straight forward and in the normal costs parameters to a costly affair.
Whenever any separating party wishes to file a Petition with the Court this attracts a Court fee which currently stands at £550.00. There are circumstances where some individuals on lower incomes may be eligible for a fee remission/reduction. Initially most Solicitors now charge a “fixed fee” for the work undertaken in the divorce procedure so long as it is of a standard nature. Our fee at present is £650.00 plus VAT. The fee is less if you are the Respondent in the Petition as there is less work to undertake on your behalf.
The other issues surrounding a marital breakdown such as what will be done with the matrimonial assets and what the arrangements will be for the children can be resolved in a number of ways and depending on how those matters are resolved will dictate the length of the process and the cost of the process. The separating parties may be on extremely good terms and reach an agreement whilst sharing a cup of tea around the kitchen table. In those circumstances the costs of formalising those arrangements will be minimal. It may be that Solicitor involvement is required to assist in the negotiations either through correspondence or through engaging in a process known as collaborative law where the parties and respective Solicitors agree not to go down the Court route and work as a team to assist the parties moving forward. Again much of this would depend on the attitude of the parties and how they can discuss the issues, negotiate and to some extent compromise. There may be a preference to engage in Mediation to assist in resolving the issues and as a last resort, should all else fail, there is the Court process to resolve those issues. Placing a figure on that side of the divorce is extremely difficult as each and every case is different but one thing is for certain should the parties seek to argue each and every issue without trying to bridge the gap in their respective positions wherever possible the costs will increase.
Should you wish to receive further information on our pricing options and the divorce process in more depth please do not hesitate to contact Mark Robinson in our Family Law team at Selby on 01757 708957. If one of our other offices is more convenient for you, please speak to a member of the Family Team – York 01904 624185, Malton 01653 600070 or Pickering 01751 472121.
Thank you Crombie Wilkinson for your blog.