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COVID-19 UPDATE: Goodwins is committed to delivering high-quality service while keeping our staff and clients safe. Currently, courts remain open and our team will continue to operate as normal, but all consultations and meetings will now be made via video call. Click here to view our full response to COVID-19.

FAQs & Advice

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What is a No Fault Divorce?

What if my partner is reluctant to divorce

Earlier this year, MPs passed the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill — the first major change to divorce law for over 50 years. The new legislation introduces the concept of ‘no-fault divorces’, allowing couples to divorce without having to prove who was at fault. Leading experts claim the new legislation will lead to more amicable separations, preventing unnecessary pain for couples and their children. The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill is a welcome change to divorce law, shifting outdated regulations into the 21st century. This article is going to explain no-fault divorces in greater detail, including how the law has changed,…

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What is Spousal Maintenance and How Much am I Entitled to?

What if my partner is reluctant to divorce

Divorce is challenging enough without the uncertain question of whether or not you’re entitled to spousal maintenance payments – or even whether you might find yourself obligated to pay it.  To help make things clearer, here are some commonly asked questions about spousal maintenance payments following a divorce, and what it might mean for couples living in England & Wales.  What is spousal maintenance?  Spousal maintenance is also known as spousal support or spousal periodical payments, and refers to payments made by someone to their ex-spouse during or after a divorce. It usually occurs when one divorced party finds themself in…

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What is the Difference Between a Family Lawyer and a Family Solicitor?


Many people will require legal advice or representation at some point in their lives – and for many that may be in the remit of family law. But what is the difference between a solicitor and a lawyer working in family law? Is there any difference at all?  In this article, we explore this question to ensure complete clarity on the subject.  What is a family lawyer?  Here in the UK, a family lawyer is more of an umbrella term that describes anyone that is qualified and licensed to give legal advice in matters pertaining to family law or to act…

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What Is Parental Alienation?


Unfortunately, not every divorce is amicable, and sometimes divorced or divorcing parents will try and unjustly turn their children against the other parent – this is known as parental alienation. Not only is this an emotionally distressing tactic for the parents and child alike, but it can also have legal implications.  In this article, we explore what parental alienation might look like, how it might affect your child and the rest of the family, and what to do if you suspect your child is being turned against you by an ex-spouse.  What is parental alienation?  Parental alienation can sometimes occur during…

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Helping children through a divorce for 7-11 Year Olds

Goodwins Family Law

Divorce can be difficult for everyone in the family, and that includes children. In this reassuring video, which is aimed at a child audience, we answer some key questions that could be on their mind. In a child-friendly way, the video explores issues about why divorce happens, what the future might look like, what feelings might arise, who they can talk to, and also includes quotes from children who have experienced divorce in their family.   If you have any questions about the topics raised in this video, or are seeking professional law advice regarding divorce and child custody, please get in…

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What Impact will COVID-19 have on Divorce or Child-share Arrangements?


Coronavirus has halted the plans of everyone on a global level – and legal disputes are no exception. However, not everybody may realise that courts remain open during COVID-19, allowing you to receive the advice and support you need for divorce and family law matters. In this article, the expert family lawyers here at Goodwins Family Law Solicitors will be exploring how couples in isolation or quarantine can proceed with married life, divorce and child custody issues at this difficult time.  Overview of the situation While the whole world stays at home, coronavirus is undoubtedly putting pressure on families across the…

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A Guide to Supporting Someone Going Through a Divorce

Small group of people with a mixed age range sitting at a table, discussing and reading books together

Helping someone through their divorce can bring hope and optimism at a time of sorrow. If you’re a friend, relative or even an employer, you may wish to lend your support.  Sometimes this can be easier said than done. Divorce cases are complex and it’s not always easy to predict how someone will react to a helping hand. You might feel apprehensive in case you do or say the wrong thing. There is always something you can do to help. This guide will offer advice and tips on how to support someone through a divorce, from before the start of the…

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How Can Health and Chronic Illness Impact a Marriage?


Studies have found that chronic illness plays a significant role in the breakdown of a marriage. Statistics show that 75% of marriages afflicted with chronic illness end in divorce. And in a further dissection of these statistics, Dr. Amelia Karraker concluded that the risk of marital dissolution was affected by which of the two spouses fell ill. This article will explain Dr Amelia Karraker’s study and her findings, as well as offer explanations for why chronic illness raises the divorce rate when experienced by a particular gender. The study A report in the Journal of Health and Social Behaviour analysed the…

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COVID-19 Update

Domestic abuse

In light of the rapidly changing situation regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, we’d like to reassure our clients that the courts remain open and we are continuing to work on our cases.  As a firm, our priority is the health and wellbeing of our staff and of everybody we work with, including our clients, contacts and suppliers. After monitoring the situation closely, we have introduced new measures to meet with government advice. Some of our staff will be working remotely. All face-to-face meetings have been cancelled and have been replaced by either Skype meetings or telephone calls. All our staff have been…

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News: Why is the UK Divorce Rate on the Decline?

divorce rates in decline title image

The latest UK divorce rate figures show that there were 90,871 divorces of heterosexual partners in 2018 — a decline of 10.6% from the previous year, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). This is the lowest number of UK divorces for 50 years.  What might have caused this drop? And should we expect such a decline to continue? This article will explore why the UK divorce rate has plummeted to its lowest level for half a century.   Divorce in the current day Many people have admitted to feeling ‘stunned’ upon hearing how many marriages end in divorce. Official…

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