Family Law & Matrimonial

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Family Law Solicitors in Stockport and Manchester

Our experienced family law solicitors are here to help you through all the legal aspects of whatever family issue you are facing.

We understand the need for sensitive, practical, timely and impartial advice at what can be a very challenging time. We also recognise the importance of a multi-disciplinary approach for many family law cases. We have a trusted network of professionals that we can call upon to assist, including Accountants, Financial Advisors and Mediators.

Our team is dedicated to finding the best possible settlement, avoiding lengthy court proceedings whenever possible, to ensure a positive outcome for everyone involved. A family problem or relationship breakdown is rarely straightforward. There are unique personal and emotional aspects to every case that impact the whole family. At Clifford Johnston & Co we ensure that every case is handled with the utmost sensitivity.

Based in our Stockport and Manchester offices, but covering the whole of England and Wales, we offer a friendly and practical approach to your case. Our family law solicitors are always happy to have a preliminary and confidential chat with you to discuss the issues of concern and to outline potential methods of tackling them. We will always tell you at the outset what your matter might cost. Fixed fees are available for some areas.

What is Family Law?

Family Law relates to legal issues involving family relationships, such as child custody, divorce, prenuptial agreements, and domestic violence restraining orders.

Family law is a comprehensive set of guidelines that safeguard the rights and obligations of family members in various situations. Its aim is to establish a framework that fosters fair and impartial outcomes for all family members, regardless of their age.

What does a Family Law Solicitor do?

At Clifford Johnston & Co, we guarantee that each case is handled with the highest level of sensitivity. We keep you informed throughout the entire process and provide practical advice to alleviate any burden on your shoulders.

We are committed to achieving the most favourable settlement while avoiding prolonged court battles, ensuring a positive outcome for all parties involved.

Our family law solicitors provide a professional, friendly service that prioritises the wellbeing of you and your family, covering issues from child law to domestic violence.

How can our family law solicitors help you?

Matters involving the family, particularly children, can be emotionally testing.

If you are going through a divorce or are currently in the middle of a family law dispute, it is important that you seek legal advice from a solicitor that will be with you from beginning to end.

The family law team at Clifford Johnston & Co is here to help you throughout this stressful process.

We offer advice, assistance and representation across a wide range of family law areas including:

To discuss your situation with a family law solicitor, call the office today for a no obligation initial chat or leave your details in the enquiry form and we’ll call you back.


Pre-Nuptial and Cohabitation Agreements

Neither pre-nuptial nor cohabitation agreements are legally binding, but both are assuming increasing importance as more couples seek to protect assets acquired prior to their marriage, civil partnership or cohabitation. Correctly drafted, there is a significant chance of a court upholding one of these agreements. This is where we can help. Our family law solicitors in Manchester and Stockport are able to explain the differences between the two agreements, the prerequisites to drawing one up and, finally, can assist you to implement a mutually satisfactory agreement.


Divorce, Dissolution of a Civil Partnership and Separation

While divorce, dissolution of a civil partnership or separation are rarely achieved without some degree of emotional upset, the right legal advice can go a long way towards helping the separating couple avoid an unnecessarily acrimonious split.

Our specialised family law solicitors can help you:

  • estimate how long the process is likely to take (anywhere between 6 months and 2 years is standard);
  • with which of the five “facts” (unreasonable behaviour, adultery, living apart for two years and both parties consent, living apart for five years and desertion for at least two years) that give ground for divorce apply to you;
  • with the procedural and logistical aspects of obtaining a divorce or dissolution;
  • assess the chances of you having to go to court; and
  • all financial matters, including how to arrive at a fair valuation of business assets, pensions, and other property, with particular expertise in high net worth divorce cases.

To find out more about how our divorce lawyers can help you please call the office and arrange a time to talk.


Division of Matrimonial Assets

Although a financial settlement order made by a Judge as a result of a divorce or civil partnership is legally binding, it is not always necessary to go to court to achieve it. Wherever possible, our family law solicitors will seek to help you and your ex-partner to reach agreement via mediation, negotiation, arbitration or collaboration.

We will help you take thorough stock of your matrimonial or civil partnership assets, including bricks-and-mortar property, cash savings, shares and pensions. We will also look at any international assets, any debts and the anticipated financial need of any children.

As part of this process you should expect us to ask questions about:

  • you and your ex-partner’s assets;
  • current and future financial needs; current and future earning capacity;
  • the age of you and your ex-partner;
  • the ages and needs of any affected children; and
  • the length of your marriage.

These questions might seem intrusive but they are necessary to help you achieve the best possible financial settlement for your future.


Child Arrangements

Arrangements for children can be one of the most stressful parts of any divorce or separation. However, it is not always necessary for the matter to end up in court. Our first approach is usually to achieve a mutually satisfactory agreement via mediation, negotiation, arbitration or collaboration.

If this is not possible, our family law solicitors will guide you through the court process to request a Child Arrangement Order from the court.

At all stages, our team of professionals can help with matters including:

  • custody (often referred to as residence);
  • access (often known as contact);
  • financial maintenance;
  • possible relocation (both within the UK and abroad); and
  • specific issues such as whether or not a child’s surname may be changed.

We can also advise grandparents and other close relatives on obtaining legal access to a child.


Adoption, Surrogacy and Assisted Reproduction

Planning to welcome a child into your family as a result of adoption, surrogacy or assisted reproduction is an exciting time. Our family law solicitors all have considerable experience in helping couples and individuals to navigate the varying legal requirements and obtain a parental order.


Child Abduction Abroad

Moving a child to another country without the permission of either the other legal parent or a court may amount to a criminal offence. Despite this, the risk of abduction is often of great concern to a divorcing or separating individual whose estranged partner has origins or connections abroad. We understand the stresses of such situations and the need for urgent legal advice to resolve the matter as speedily as possible. Our family law solicitors are happy to act either for parents whose children have been (or are at risk of being) abducted abroad or for those who have taken their children to another country without appropriate consent.


Domestic Violence

We understand that it can take enormous effort and courage to extricate you, and perhaps also your children, from a situation involving domestic violence. Our professional and compassionate family law solicitors can help you apply for a court order to protect you from further violence, harassment or threats together with an order to prevent a particular person from entering or approaching your home.

Our team can also help you protect your children and, when and if you are ready, assist you to divorce an abusive partner and obtain a satisfactory financial outcome. Where appropriate, we seek to co-operate and liaise with other interested professionals including medical professionals, social workers and law enforcement agencies.

Finally, we are also able to signpost you towards other agencies that may be able to assist you and your children to heal the psychological scars and look forward to the future with confidence and optimism.

Who pays legal costs in Family Court?

In most cases, the applicant is responsible for paying the court fees. This ensures that all necessary administrative tasks are taken care of before the divorce proceedings begin. But in some instances, couples may agree to split the fees, especially in joint applications.

People with low income or who receive certain benefits, like Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, and Universal Credit, may qualify for a court fee waiver. They can request this exemption through the courts.

Do I need a Family Law Solicitor to go to Family Court?

Although it’s not mandatory to hire a professional family law team to attend family court, it’s advisable to have an adept team of family law solicitors by your side. Clifford Johnston & Co has a family law team consisting of skilled family law solicitors, divorce solicitors and other legal experts who possess specialised knowledge in different aspects of family law.

Our family law solicitors are available for a private consultation to discuss your concerns and suggest approaches.

Contact the expert family law solicitors in Manchester and Stockport today.

With over 35 years of experience, we are among the leading law firms in the Stockport and Manchester area. Our friendly team will deal with your enquiry sensitively and with understanding so contact us today for helpful and supportive advice about your family law issues.

Our friendly team will deal with your enquiry sensitively and with understanding so contact us today for helpful and supportive advice. Our Family Lawyers are based at both of our offices and their vast experience makes them an integral part of our team of Family Solicitors in Manchester and in Stockport.

With offices in Stockport (Heaton Moor) & Manchester (Burnage), our expert family solicitors are easily accessible. We represent clients not only locally throughout Stockport and Cheshire, Lancashire & Manchester but also across the United Kingdom.  Our Family Lawyers act regularly for clients from across the North West and Cheshire including Altrincham, Hale, Alderley Edge, Wilmslow and Knutsford.

You can count on our Stockport and Manchester Solicitors to help and guide you whatever your challenge or circumstance.

During the current Covid 19 crisis we can make arrangements to take instructions from you by telephone or video conferencing and will still be able to access the courts to deal with any emergency applications which may need to be made.

Need some professional advice?

Do you have any issues that you are worried about? Contact our professional team for a free, no-obligation informal discussion, where we can discuss your particular requirements in greater detail.

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