Can a Divorce be Amicable?

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Going through a divorce can be a very emotionally challenging time for both parties involved. The breakdown of a relationship may not only affect the spouses, but also their children and family too. There are many factors to consider when going through a divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership, including the division of assets, finances and child custody and maintenance agreements. 

Expert Family Law has access to an experienced panel of divorce lawyers who are able to assist divorcing couples throughout the entire process, ensuring they receive the most appropriate legal advice for their unique situation. If you would like to find out more about how a family law solicitor on our panel can assist you, please get in touch with us today. 

What is an amicable divorce?

An amicable separation or divorce refers to a situation where a married couple decides to end their marriage in a peaceful and cooperative manner, without significant conflict or hostility. In an amicable divorce, the spouses work together to reach agreements on issues such as the division of assets, child custody and support, and spousal maintenance, among others, without resorting to litigation or adversarial legal battles.

Key characteristics of an amicable divorce may include:

  • Open communication: Both spouses are willing to communicate openly and honestly with each other to discuss their needs, concerns, and priorities.
  • Cooperation: Spouses are willing to collaborate and compromise to find mutually acceptable solutions to issues related to the divorce, such as money and property division plus child custody arrangements.
  • Respect: There is mutual respect between the spouses, even though they are ending their marriage. They may acknowledge each other’s contributions during the marriage and aim to part ways with dignity.
  • Minimal conflict: Unlike contentious divorces, where disputes often escalate, an amicable divorce typically involves minimal conflict and avoids unnecessary confrontation or hostility.
  • Focus on the future: Rather than dwelling on past grievances, spouses in an amicable divorce focus on planning for their future lives separately, as well as co-parenting effectively if they have children together.

While an amicable divorce may not be possible in every situation, it can offer numerous benefits, including reduced emotional stress, lower legal costs, and a smoother transition to post-divorce life for both spouses and any children involved. Many couples choose mediation or collaborative divorce processes to facilitate an amicable divorce, with the assistance of trained professionals such as mediators or collaborative lawyers.

What is the process of going through a divorce amicably?

The process of going through an amicable divorce typically involves several key steps:

  • Open Communication: Both spouses openly discuss their decision to divorce and their respective desires and concerns regarding the division of assets, child custody arrangements, and other essential matters.
  • Agreement on Terms: Spouses work together to reach agreements on various aspects of the divorce, including the division of property, assets, debts, child custody and visitation schedules, child support, and spousal support (if applicable). This often involves negotiation and compromise.
  • Legal Assistance: While an amicable divorce generally involves less conflict and litigation than a traditional divorce, it’s still advisable for each spouse to seek legal advice from separate solicitors to ensure their rights and interests are protected. These family lawyers can review any agreements reached and provide guidance on legal requirements and implications.
  • Mediation or Collaborative Process: Many couples opt to use mediation or collaborative divorce processes to facilitate communication and negotiation. In mediation, a neutral third party (the mediator) assists the spouses in reaching agreements, while in collaborative divorce, each spouse has their own solicitor, and all parties commit to resolving issues without going to court.
  • Drafting Legal Documents: Once agreements have been reached, the necessary legal documents, such as a divorce settlement agreement or parenting plan, are drafted to formalise the terms of the divorce. These documents are reviewed by the spouses and their respective legal professionals to ensure accuracy and completeness.
  • Filing for Divorce: After all agreements have been finalised and legal documents prepared, one spouse typically files for the new standard ‘no fault’ divorce.
  • Court Approval: In some cases, especially if children are involved, the court may require a brief hearing to review the divorce settlement agreement and ensure it is fair and in the best interests of any children. Once the court process is approved and complete, the divorce can be finalised.
  • Finalising the Divorce: After the court approves the divorce settlement agreement, a final judgment of divorce is issued, officially ending the marriage. Any necessary steps to implement the terms of the agreement, such as transferring property titles or establishing child support payments, are completed.

Throughout the process of an amicable divorce, maintaining a cooperative and respectful attitude can help facilitate smoother negotiations and reduce conflict. Additionally, being open to compromise and prioritising the well-being of any children involved can contribute to a more positive outcome for both spouses and their families. Ultimately, amicable divorces can save you time and money by actively working towards a shared goal and avoiding litigation in court. 

How much does an amicable divorce cost?

The cost of an amicable divorce in the UK can vary depending on a few factors, but it’s generally much cheaper than a contested divorce that goes to court. 

There’s a mandatory government fee to file for divorce, currently £593. For an amicable divorce, solicitor fees are typically lower because there’s less back-and-forth negotiation. Some solicitors also offer fixed-fee options for uncontested divorces.

If you use mediation or collaborative law to reach agreements, there will be additional fees. These can vary depending on the experience of the mediator or lawyers involved but typically start from £220 per hour.

How can Expert Family Law assist?

If you and your significant other are thinking about ending your marriage, our divorce solicitors and divorce coaches will provide you with compassionate support during this trying period.

Our experts can assist you with all aspects of the legal process of divorce. This includes filing for divorce, addressing divorce papers, reaching a financial agreement, handling long-term child custody arrangements, and parental responsibility.

We ensure that the law firms on our panel have the skills and experience required to assist with your legal case.

No matter the circumstances, our team of family lawyers strive to provide our clients with an outcome that is right for both them and their families. As such, the guidance and legal services they provide are specific to suit each individual’s personal circumstances.

Get in touch today using the form at the top of the page to find out if a divorce solicitor from our panel could help on your case.

 

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