Family Law Solicitors

Family life can be unpredictable, with highs and lows delivered in equal measure. That is why it pays to have a specialist family law solicitor on your side. Our experienced family law experts can guide you through everything from setting up home with your partner to making financial arrangements following the breakdown of your relationship. We can also help resolve disputes about children, including those arising out of adoption and local authority care proceedings. 

Adopting a non-confrontational approach where possible, our lawyers are trained to find solutions to even the most challenging of issues, including those involving domestic violence and abuse. 

Our team of experienced family lawyers can help with:

  • wealth protection via a cohabitation agreement for unmarried couples or a prenuptial agreement for soon to be husbands, wives and civil partners; 
  • relationship breakdown by guiding you through separation, divorce and civil partnership dissolution
  • financial arrangements as part of your divorce or civil partnership dissolution package; 
  • disputes about children such as where they should live, who they should have contact with and arrangements where one parent intends to move abroad;
  • parenting issues where a parental responsibility order from the court may be needed to ensure both parents have an equal say about decisions affecting their children’s lives, or where there are issues around fertility and surrogacy; 
  • family care proceedings where a local authority has indicated an intention to remove your child or to put them up for adoption; and
  • family safeguarding in cases of domestic violence or abuse. 

If you need help with a family law matter, please get in touch to see how we can help. You can call us on 01474 351199 or use our contact form and we will call you.

For further information please call to speak to one of our experts on 01474 351199

Why choose our family law solicitors?

Choosing the right lawyer to help you and your family is a daunting task. You need someone you can trust to:

  • Listen to your problems
  • Provide practical advice that is simple to understand
  • Help you make informed decisions about what to do
  • Keep you in the loop at all times
  • Help reduce stress

Our family law solicitors understand exactly what you are going through and are on hand to provide advice, guidance and emotional support from the moment you need us.

Our specialist team is led by Avril Croud, a dedicated family lawyer with over 30 years’ experience helping families find their way through challenging issues.

We are accredited by the Law Society with the Family Law Accreditation. Avril was one of the first solicitors to be admitted to the Family Panel and is also an accredited Family Law Advanced specialist.

Our team also includes:

  • Deborah Nicholson, an accredited member of the Family Panel and qualified collaborative lawyer.
  • Laura Hails, a qualified collaborative lawyer.

Avril, Deborah and Laura are all members of Resolution, a family law network dedicated to helping families find constructive out-of-court settlements to a wide range of problems. We adhere to the Resolution Code of Conduct to help our clients, so you can expect us to:

  • Listen, be honest and treat you with respect.
  • Set out all your options so you can make confident decisions about what to do.
  • Help you focus on the long-term important things.
  • Help you weigh up the costs of achieving the outcome you want, including financial and emotional costs.
  • Manage stress.

Our Family Law team has also received the Law Society Children Law Accreditation for our skills representing children in family law proceedings.

Our approach to helping you

Alternatives to court

As a firm we believe that that a non-confrontational approach works best when dealing with family law matters, which is why many of our lawyers are members of the family support organisation, Resolution.  It is also why, as an alternative to going to court, we regularly resolve disputes via:

When you first come to see us, we will explain the options and explore which approach would work best in your circumstances.

We Need To Talk: Top tips to keep kids' best interests first during divorce or separation from Resolution on Vimeo.

How does family mediation work?

Mediation is a process that helps families sort out challenging family law issues without having to go to court.

It involves attending one or more sessions with a qualified mediator to talk about issues such as:

  • Arrangements for children upon divorce, dissolution or separation
  • Divorce financial settlements
  • Resolving problems between family members, such as grandparents’ rights to see their grandchildren

The mediator’s role is to guide your discussions, defuse conflict and help you come to an arrangement that works for everyone.

They do not give legal advice, take sides or make a judgment about what you should do – any agreement is entirely down to you.

The mediator will put your agreement in writing if you are able to agree. You can then take this agreement for further legal advice or apply to court to make it legally binding.

We can provide advice about whether mediation may suit you and refer you to specialist mediators. For more information about our mediation services, visit our Family Mediation Solicitors page.

How does collaborative law work?

Like mediation, collaborative law is the process of sorting out family law issues, such as divorce financial settlements and arrangements for children, without going to court.

However, instead of attending sessions with a mediator, you and your partner or ex-partner will be accompanied by your own trained collaborative lawyers.

Your collaborative lawyers will help you negotiate and can provide legal advice during the process. You can also invite other professionals to provide advice and opinions, such as independent financial advisors. So, collaborative law is popular with couples who have more complex matters, such as high value finances or international issues.

Our team includes highly experienced collaborative lawyers, Deborah Nicholson and Laura Hails, who are on hand to support you through some of life’s most difficult times.

Family court proceedings

While our focus is on helping families resolve issues out-of-court wherever possible, we understand that sometimes that is not always possible.

We are also experienced at helping families make and defend a wide range of family court applications, including:

  • Child Arrangements Orders – to sort out where children will live and who they should have contact with.
  • Specific Issues Orders – for decisions about a child’s upbringing, such as where they should go to school or whether their surname can be changed.
  • Prohibited Steps Orders – to prevent someone with parental responsibility (usually the parents) from doing something, such as taking a child to live abroad.
  • Guardianship Orders – to appoint a guardian for children.
  • Domestic violence applications, such as Non-Molestation Orders/Injunctions and Occupation Orders.
  • Family care proceedings, such as Care Orders, Supervision Orders and Placement Orders.

We aim to make family court proceedings as straightforward and stress-free as possible. We will work closely with you throughout to make sure that you fully understand the proceedings and can make the best decisions about how to move forwards.

Advising families throughout Gravesend, Kent and beyond

We have offices in Maidstone, Gravesend, Tonbridge, Chatham and Tenterden where we can meet you to discuss your requirements.

We can also offer meetings by skype for clients who have to travel extensively or who now live abroad. In exceptional circumstances, home visits can also be arranged.

Fixed cost initial appointment / Legal Aid

We offer an initial appointment to discuss your requirements at a fixed cost of £100 plus VAT.  After that we can arrange flexible payment terms, including monthly billing to help you budget.

Legal aid may also be available in certain cases and is normally always available for defending care proceedings and taking steps to protect against domestic violence or child abuse.

Get in touch with our family law solicitors in Gravesend, Kent

If you need help with a family law matter, please get in touch to see how we can help. You can call us on 01474 351199 or use our contact form and we will call you.

 

For further information please call to speak to one of our experts on 01474 351199