Do I Need a Lawyer to Get Divorced in the UK?

Today many couples are opting for what is known as a DIY Divorce. While the process does have its merits, if you are considering a divorce then you need to take a look at several key facts before you can decide whether you need a lawyer to handle your divorce or if you can opt for the DIY route.

To determine whether you need a lawyer, there are several questions you need to ask when considering a divorce, according to Marion Brierly, one of the top lawyers at
• Do you have grounds for a divorce?
In the UK there are five grounds for divorce which allows one or both parties to file for a divorce. Adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, the couple are separated for more than two years and separation for at least five years.
• Will the divorce be uncontested or contested?
If both parties agree that divorce is the only way then it will be uncontested. You do not need a lawyer if your divorce is uncontested. You will need a lawyer if any aspect of your divorce is contested. This also includes payment of maintenance by one part to another.
• Will minor children be affected by the divorce?
Children often suffer the most during a divorce. You will need the assistance of a lawyer when your divorce affects minor children in the UK. Issues that your lawyer will handle include visitation, child support, and your responsibilities as a parent. A divorce court will always take into consideration what would be the best for the children involved.
• Can your property be easily divided?
If you own property or high-value goods and neither party is willing to give them up then you are going to have to enlist the services of a professional divorce lawyer. But, on the other hand, should you be able to amicably decide who gets what, and then you will be able to settle your divorce without the help of a lawyer.
• Do you own substantial assets?
If you and your spouse own a substantial amount of assets, then you will need to hire a professional divorce lawyer. You may want to hire a lawyer even if the division of the items will be simple and without a fight. This will merely ensure that both parties are left enough assets to start over. A lawyer will also ensure that the agreement reached is legal and the repercussions, later on, are minimal.
• Does any party have connections abroad?
This will apply to all those who are foreign nationals in the UK or those who were married abroad. It would be more financially smart to then divorce abroad. It is strongly advised that you immediately contact a lawyer if this applies to you. Hesitation about getting a divorce could result in large financial losses.
• Will you be requiring future support?
If you do not need your spouse to support you financially after the divorce then you do not need a lawyer. If on the other hand, you will need your spouse to financially support you after the divorce, then you need a lawyer’s assistance.