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The importance of seeking legal advice at the earliest opportunity during a divorce or separation

Baroness Hale of Richmond, who will shortly retire, is the first female president of the Supreme Court, which is the final court of appeal in the UK.

As outgoing president, she has recently taken the opportunity to highlight her concerns about access to justice following legal aid cuts and said the problem was particularly evident in family courts.

Lady Hale said: “It’s unreasonable to expect a husband and wife or mother and father who are in crisis in their personal relationship to make their own arrangements without help.”

She said in such family dispute cases “there may be an imbalance in resources because of the lack of access”.

She added that most people require legal help at the beginning of cases and additional resources would allow many disputes to be resolved at an early stage, without the need to go to court or stretch their finances.

Summarising that “It is that lack of initial advice and help which is a serious difficulty.”

We wholeheartedly agree with her. The sooner a separating couple can seek legal advice about how best to deal with issues over their finances and their children, the easier things can be made for all concerned.

As legal aid is now only available in very limited circumstances for divorce, child contact and financial settlements, at Sweeney Miller we offer a range of fixed fees to give our clients peace of mind and certainty about their legal costs.

Find out more from our dedicated pages: divorce and financial settlement, divorce and splitting assets and divorce and pensions.

With offices in Sunderland and Newcastle, our family lawyers work with clients across the North East. For a free no obligation first discussion, please get in touch:

Family Solicitors in Sunderland: 0191 5682050

Family Solicitors in Newcastle: 0345 900 5401

Email: rebecca@sweeneymiller.co.uk

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