What is Family Law?
Family law focuses on legal issues arising from relationship creation and relationship breakdown – whether that relates to children, finances, or domestic abuse. We are respected for our straight-forward and pragmatic advice and provide realistic tailored solutions as everyone’s circumstances are unique. We understand that our clients are facing life-changing decisions and that they need empathy as well as astute legal advice.
As members of Resolution, our team is committed to resolving family matters without acrimony wherever possible. However, we are experienced litigators and where court proceedings or arbitration are necessary, we represent our clients through the full process with care, diligence and tenacity. We represent clients with proceedings in regional courts across the country, the Central Family Court in London, the High Court and the Court of Appeal.
Our family solicitors can help with all the following and more:
Wealth protection and nuptial agreements
We advise on and prepare prenuptial and postnuptial agreements, which provide vital protection for assets being brought by a spouse into a marriage. We regularly advise people with dynastic wealth and trust assets, CEOs and high earners, entrepreneurs and business owners. In addition to protecting and ringfencing assets, these agreements can also help to confirm your responsibilities and obligations towards each other should you separate, providing reassurance to the financially weaker spouse.
For those that are not married but are living together, we can advise on and prepare cohabitation agreements to protect property and individual wealth. These agreements can make clear your financial obligations towards each other both during the relationship and on separation.
Divorce and civil partnership
We can advise on the legal process of dissolving your marriage or civil partnership and any complexities that arise. For most people, this is a simple process but for example, if you are an international couple, there may be jurisdictional considerations. Seeking early advice when you are contemplating a divorce helps you to make informed choices about your future. It can also help to protect your assets.
Finances on divorce
Determining the division of wealth when divorcing is often the most complex aspect of marital breakdown. We have extensive experience in representing high net worth (HNW) individuals and acting on cases involving complex pensions, trusts, business interests, taxation issues and offshore assets. We also frequently work with trusted third parties including barristers, tax specialists, accountants, and financial advisors to secure the best possible advice for our clients.
We strive wherever possible to resolve financial settlements in an efficient and cost-effective way, whilst still ensuring a fair settlement. However, when litigation is required, we are also prepared to be robust and protect your best interests.
Financial support for children outside of marriage
Where parents are separated and unmarried, we can advise on the financial claims that can be made for the benefit of any children, both through the Child Maintenance Service (also known as the CMS) but also through the court system under Schedule 1 of the Children Act 1989. Depending upon the level of assets and income available to the parties, we can help the parent with the day-to-day care of the child ensure that the child’s housing and income needs are met, and school fees are paid.
Private children disputes
We advise parents that may be in conflict following a relationship breakdown or where those with parental responsibility disagree about fundamental decisions to be made in a child’s best interests. For example, they may disagree on who the children will live with, the time they should spend with their parents, where they should go to school, planned medical treatment, or educational decisions. We also act for parents in private disputes where there are safeguarding concerns.
We represent both those that are victims of domestic abuse, and those accused of being abusive. We help with urgent injunctive court proceedings, negotiate the basis of any ongoing living arrangements and communication between parties, and safeguard any children. We can help with strategising when dealing with a difficult ex and have particular experience with narcissistic personality disorder and other mental conditions that can make divorce and separation more difficult.
Separation of non-married couples and cohabitation disputes
We advise on the separation of joint assets (such as property, businesses and bank accounts) for those that are separating but are unmarried. Most often these disputes occur when a romantic relationship breaks down. However, there are many instances where people cohabit with a family member or friend and a dispute arises.
We advise on donor conception, surrogacy and private adoption and help couples to ensure that they have the necessary legal rights for their children.
Top ranked lawyers
B P Collins’ reputation continues to excel in independent legal directories. The firm is recognised for its top class lawyers and service, many of which are tier one and many of our lawyers are recognised as either leaders in their field or next generation lawyers.
Our family practice is recommended for client services in the latest edition of Chambers UK and The Legal 500 and is experienced in acting in high profile matters with complex assets. Our family team is ranked 1 by both The Legal 500 and Chambers UK with head of team, Sue Andrews, regarded as a Leading Individual in Legal 500 and Band 1 by Chambers UK.
We provide a personal, bespoke service to support our clients and are able to draw on the wealth of top quality advice of our colleagues in different teams. B P Collins has an enviable spread of specialisms and we seldom need to seek legal advice from outside the firm.
Get in touch
Follow our family team’s instagram page to learn more: @familylawyers_bpc.