How Should I Choose A Divorce Lawyer?

When you and your spouse have decided that you are no longer able to stay married, it is important to choose the right solicitor to help you through the divorce process. This will be an emotional time for you and therefore you need to find a solicitor who can be practical, professional and who is on your side during this difficult time.

It is important to take your time and do some research to ensure that you get the best possible representation, no matter what your circumstances are. It is also important to know that the law is different in Scotland and Northern Ireland than it is in England and Wales, so you need to make sure that your solicitor has expertise in divorce in the area of the UK that relates to you.

First and foremost you need to know that the solicitor you use has experience in family law. There are a number of ways you can check this. The solicitor’s website will detail their expertise and you should meet them in person for a discussion about your circumstances. This meeting not only allows you to understand their expertise, but it also helps you to decide if you feel comfortable with them acting on your behalf.

You need to be able to communicate freely with your solicitor so if they make you feel uncomfortable by using long words and legal jargon they are probably not the right fit for you. Many solicitors will offer a free initial discussion to learn more about your situation and this gives you an opportunity to review them too.

It may be important to you to keep conflict to a minimum, especially if there are children involved in the divorce, and by using a collaborative family solicitor you can achieve this. Collaborative family law allows both you and your spouse to meet with your solicitors to work through your divorce together without going to court and you sign an agreement to this effect. This can help to significantly reduce the animosity and bring your divorce to a conclusion as amicably as possible.

Choosing a solicitor to represent you can be difficult, but if you take your time and research your options before making a choice, you can ensure you end up with a solicitor you are comfortable with.

This information provided in this article is not intended to constitute legal advice and each relationship breakdown requires careful consideration in our view by a fully qualified Solicitor before decisions are made and before you embark on a certain course of action.

Shak Inayat
Solicitor
0207 183 2898

Should Will Writing Be Regulated?

There are a number of different ways in which you can make a Will in the UK. You can visit a solicitor and ask them to draft one for you, ask a Will drafting company to prepare your Will or you may purchase a ‘Do It yourself’ Will writing pack.

However, by not using a solicitor to produce your Will, you cannot be sure that your Will is valid and if it isn’t, you have no recourse at all. This is because Will writing companies are not regulated in the same way solicitors are
The Legal Ombudsman has produced a report urging the government to regulate the Will writing industry so that consumers are protected, whether they choose to use a solicitor or not.

The Legal Ombudsman oversees complaints from consumers against law firms and each law firm and solicitor who practises is regulated by their professional body, the SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority). They can be disciplined if their behaviour or quality of work is not of the required standard. The Legal Ombudsman recognises that Wills and Probate complaints make up a large amount of their workload, emanating from a regulated professional, so one might safely assume that there are similar quality issues at large in the unregulated Will writing companies sector. However, the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) does not agree with the report and suggests that there is no need for new regulation. The MoJ suggests that using or adapting existing regulation under consumer laws would provide ample protection for the people who are using these Will writing services as opposed to regulated solicitors.

They do recognise though that anyone making a Will should feel secure in the knowledge that their family will be looked after and that their wishes will be carried out as per the instructions in their Will.

What is clear though, is that any mistakes made in your Will are most likely not going to become apparent until after you die and this means that your family and loved ones will not only have to cope with their grief, they may have a fight on their hands regarding the validity of your Will.

This information provided in this article is not intended to constitute legal advice and each relationship breakdown requires careful consideration in our view by a fully qualified Solicitor before decisions are made and before you embark on a certain course of action.

Shak Inayat
Solicitor
0207 183 2898