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1. Ellis Jones Solicitors
The breakdown of a relationship can lead to difficult and emotionally charged disputes over children and money.

At Ellis Jones we have a team of first class family lawyers with a wealth of experience gained in central London. They can advise you on how to resolve these disputes in the most pragmatic and cost effective way.

What happens if you and your spouse can't reach an agreement?

Sometimes negotiations are not successful and a stalemate is reached. The only way then to break the logjam is to start financial proceedings. A short form is issued at Court and sets in motion a strict timetable to resolve the financial dispute as follows:

1 A hearing called "The First Appointment" will take place usually 12 to 16 weeks after the financial application has been filed. You and your husband or wife will exchange your financial statements (known as "Form E") at the same time, at least 35 days before the hearing. This statement gives a detailed summary of your finances. At least 14 days before the hearing, various documents are sent to the Court including a questionnaire. This sets out various questions to be answered and documents produced to clarify the finances. The District Judge will decide at the First Appointment how much of this questionnaire must be answered.

2 At the First Appointment a District Judge will fix a date for a Financial Dispute Resolution hearing (FDR). The FDR hearing (at which the parties will be encouraged to reach an agreement) is likely to take place about 2 to 3 months after the First Appointment. The District Judge can also treat the First Appointment as an FDR hearing if appropriate. 3 At the FDR hearing the District Judge will be able to see that proposals have been made to settle the dispute. Some District Judges give their view of an appropriate settlement as a guideline.

4 If a settlement is not reached at the FDR stage, there is a final hearing at which a District Judge will make a decision on the right settlement having heard evidence from you and your partner. Very few cases reach this stage. It is expensive and is only reached if all other attempts to settle the case fail. By issuing "financial proceedings" it does not mean that you are forced to proceed to a final hearing; most cases are resolved by way of a negotiated settlement at any early stage either before or after proceedings are issued but well before reaching a final hearing. There are many opportunities to settle a case on route and both you and your partner are under a duty to negotiate with each other. It is usual that negotiations take place while proceedings are running. The above procedure is only applicable to couples who are or have been married.

We have considerable expertise in this area.
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Rating: [5.50]

2. Frettens - Solicitors (Christchurch, Dorset)
The breakdown of a relationship can be one of the most traumatic periods of anyone's life. Naturally, you will be concerned about your current financial and property arrangements and how it will affect any children you may have.

Our Family Team advises and represents clients in all types of family matters including divorce, co-habitee disputes, children and financial disputes.

We are used to advising clients in difficult emotional situations. We aim to provide sympathetic personal advice tailored to your individual circumstances and requirements. We offer prompt and practical advice on how to cope with problems and resolve them.

Solving family law problems often involves many other aspects of the law. Our Family Team can call on the expertise of other departments within the firm whenever necessary to advise, for example, on company law and tax and trust issues.

Our Family Team has considerable experience in advising and representing high networth clients but also clients from all backgrounds with all types of problems and disputes. Members of the team are members of the Law Society?s Advanced Family Law Panel, 'Resolution' (formerly the Solicitors Family Law Association) and the Law Society?s Children Panel.

We are successfully bridging the gap between the small high street practice unable to offer a broad range of specialist legal advice and very large regional and City firms who primarily tailor their services to large corporate clients.

Our breadth of specialist knowledge and common sense approach is complemented by a close working relationship between Fretten?s various practice areas.

It is this combination of partner-led teams, personal service and expertise that allows us to offer the broad range of services all our clients require.
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Rating: [1.00]

3. H G Walker & Company. The Friendly Solicitors
Harold G Walker & Company is one of the largest and most widely known firms of solicitors based in and around the Bournemouth area.

Formed in 1946, the firm has 5 branches, 10 partners and over 60 staff.

We can help you with your divorce and family law proceedings.
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Rating: [0.00]

4. Aldridge & Brownlee Solicitors in Bournemouth Dorset
Offering the following family law legal services in the Bournemouth region:

Divorce - We can advise you if you would be able to issue divorce proceedings and whether it would be in your best interests to do so. We can also explain the procedure on divorce and how long it will take.

Separation - If you do not wish to issue divorce proceedings but want to live apart from your partner, we can advise you on the best way to achieve this and on entering into a separation agreement.

Financial Matters - On separation or divorce advice is often needed as to how the matrimonial assets should be divided and what factors a Court would take into account. We can guide you through this process and advise you on what forms should be completed.

Problems In Relation To Children - On the breakdown of a relationship the interests of the children should always be taken into consideration. We can advise you on your rights and obligations in relation to your children, whether you have been married or not. We can advise you on parental responsibility and what rights this gives to you and also on issues of who your child should reside or have contact with and how regular that contact should be.

Care Proceedings - We have two Solicitors on the Law Society Children Panel and we can advise you on issues regarding Social Services and in connection with Court proceedings.

Domestic Violence Injunctions - If you have suffered violence in a relationship, we can advise you on obtaining an Order from the Court which is known as an Injunction to prevent any further violence, or in certain circumstances an Order dealing with the occupation of a property following violence.

Cohabitation - We can advise you before you start to cohabit on cohabitation contracts or on the breakdown of a relationship we can advise on your rights so far as, for example, any property is concerned.

Mediation - We have a trained family mediator who would be able to assist a couple in an impartial way to reach their own workable arrangements on issues arising from separation or divorce. This is achieved by a series of meetings between the couple and the mediator.
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Rating: [0.00]

5. Divorce Specialists - Williams Thompson Solicitors
Did you know that Williams Thompson is one of the leading specialist Family Law Practices in the South of England?

As specialists we have developed an understanding of the Client's expectations. We are up to date with the rapidly changing requirements of Family Law.

We have Law Society Accredited Family Lawyers and are members of the Solicitors Family Law Association we are committed to non-confrontational negotiation, but are equally capable of taking a firm line to protect your interests when required.

We have particular expertise in acting for clients with family companies or in senior management in divorce or family breakdown.

Within our Family Division we cover the whole range of family issues including:
Divorce and Separation
Financial resolution by agreement or Order from the straight forward case to the most complex
The effect of divorce and separation on pensions investments and trusts
Court Hearings in respect of all types of Family Law matters
Emergency applications for financial protection
Implementation of family agreements and Court Orders
Pre-nuptial and cohabitation agreements
Cohabitation breakdown including financial disputes
Financial disputes following a death
Children including arrangements for contact and residence
Child support and maintenance variation
Injunctions for violence and harassment

Why choose Williams Thompson? Because

Correct and sympathetic handling of your case can also help reduce the acrimony and the time it takes to resolve issues.

If you should find yourself in a relationship breakdown, what you need is the support of good independent legal advice - from a Solicitor specialising in such work.

As a leading specialist family law practice we are able to offer you the support and guidance you need. Our New Client Referral Assistant, Suzanne Kadziola, will take your details and make an appointment with the solicitor best suited to your individual requirements.
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Rating: [10.00]

6. Druitts Solicitors, The Family Firm of Solicitors
We understand that the breakdown of any relationship whether it be a married or co-habiting couple can be traumatic often leading to disputes regarding children and financial assets. We offer a sympathetic, friendly service and can guide you through this difficult time in your life providing practical and cost effective solutions.

We can offer advice on whether you have grounds for issuing divorce proceedings, explain the procedure in simple language avoiding the use of legal jargon and we can advise on how long it would take to finalise any divorce.

We can advise you on this alternative to divorce proceedings.

We can help you reach a fair agreement on how financial assets should be divided and if agreement cannot be reached we can guide you through the necessary court process.

One in every six couples in England and Wales are living together but not married. Statistics show that there is a higher rate of break-up amongst non-married co-habiting couples than amongst married couples. We can draft a Co-habitation Agreement for you setting out how any property is owned, who contributed what to the purchase price and how any profit should be divided in a future sale. A Co-habitation Agreement can also cover matters like savings, investments and even pets.

We can also advise you of your rights if you have been co-habiting and the relationship then breaks down and you cannot reach agreement on how to split the financial assets in the absence of a Co-habitation Agreement.
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Rating: [6.00]

7. Gales Solicitors
Gales Solicitors, based in Bournemouth, offer a wide range of legal services from experienced solicitors. Established 1948. Do you need legal advice in respect of a matrimonial matter, family matter or children? Peter Farrow would be pleased to assist you.
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Rating: [0.00]

8. Richard Sedgley & Co Solicitors - Bournemouth
Our practice includes divorce; separation; family mediation; cohabitation agreements; Children Act Applications.
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Rating: [1.00]

9. D'Angibau Willmot Solicitors, In Bournemouth & Poole
Headline cases over the last several years have caused ripples within the legal system and, to some, even waves. Jonathan Harvey sets out below some of the main points a Court will consider when deciding on the division of assets following a marriage breakdown.

Statute sets out a list of factors - the Court considers these first when deciding how the assets should be divided. The usual first consideration is securing where possible suitable accommodation for the children with the parent with whom they will live in the future. The points made below can then be considered, where relevant, if there is more than enough for distribution having first considered these basic factors.

Principles of fairness - these apply whatever the extent of the assets available for a distribution, large or small. However, fairness does not necessarily mean equality which is more likely where there is sufficient capital and income to meet both of the party's needs. If equality is not followed, the Court should state why this is.

Arguments against equality - a husband can successfully argue that his contribution to the marriage by building up a very successful business means that he can have a greater share to take into account an "exceptional" contribution. This may not happen as often as might at first be thought to be the case.

The wife's role - if this is predominantly the bringing up of children and looking after the family home, this contribution to the marriage can be equal even to a successful business built up by the husband.

Assets of a more usual size- rather than give, usually, a husband the smaller balance remaining after the wife has enough to secure suitable housing for herself and their children, it may be possible to argue that the husband's share could be wholly or partially deferred. This could mean that he receives a total share nearer to one half of the assets by the time the children have grown up and do not need a home.

Shorter marriages where assets are substantial - the headline cases which have been reported in the press generally refer to "long" marriages of , say, 20 years or more. The length of the marriage is one of statutory factors to consider referred to in the first point above. "Medium" length marriages (perhaps 10-12 years) may therefore lead to a wife being awarded less. This disparity will be even more marked with a short marriage.

Valuation of businesses - where a business is trading poorly or at a loss, the division of assets should not necessarily provide that the wife receives the secure assets, leaving the husband with an asset which only may improve in the future. Both "copper bottomed" and risk-laden assets could be divided.

The firm is the result of the merger in 1994 of D'Angibau & Malim, Walker Hinds and Willmot & East having been founded originally in 1891. In July 1997 D?Angibau Willmot was granted an Investors in People Award in addition to the "Family Friendly" Award granted by Dorset TEC.
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Rating: [9.00]

10. Bruce Curtis-Turner & Co - Poole, UK Based Dorset solicitors
Our matrimonial department specialises in divorce, separation and post cohabitation problems and ancillaries relating to same.

Owing to the personal nature of these matters, appointments can be arranged for day times, evenings or weekends and also away from the office at our private consulting rooms at Merley House, Wimborne.

Amongst our workload, we undertake preparation of the latest forms of pre-nuptial agreements and pre-cohabitation agreements and Teresa Allen our specialist lawyer in respect of family matters, will be pleased to discuss same with you directly over the telephone to outline their effect in English Law generally.

In 1981 Bruce Curtis Turner moved from Dorset Solicitors in central Bournemouth to form a new practice in Broadstone, initially focusing on the legal aspects of buying and selling residential and commercial properties, and general family Law as Dorset Solicitors.

Several years ago Dorset Solicitors widened its spectrum to include probate, divorce, plus company and commercial transactions of all types and especially in the Care Home Industry and to dealing in licensed premises particularly public houses.

To further enhance and strengthen the potential of the firm, an association with Nicholas Drukker & Co of Fleet Street, London was established in 1990. This made a wealth of specialised commercial expertise and resource available to the local business community.

In 1999 Nicholas Drukker joined Bruce Curtis Turner as a partner in the Bruce Curtis Turner & Co Team to cement further our relationship with Nicholas Drukker at his separate practice at Mitre Court, 44-46 Fleet Street, London.

Nigel Schofield, a solicitor of considerable experience, left a large firm of Solicitors in Bournemouth to join the team as a Partner in 2001 adding significant strength to the firm's skill set.

With direct communications and a close and well established working relationship, the best possible service and advice is assured.
More Info....
Rating: [10.00]

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