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Online Divorce cases rejected by Courts

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Divorce and Family Law solicitors are advising potential divorce clients to check they have appointed the right professional solicitors and that their documentation is in order, after 28 online divorces were thrown out of court because they had identical wording.

The petitions for divorce were issued by the same online firm, iDivorces, which is an unregulated provider.  All the cases were issued to the Court with identical particulars of behaviour and were rejected by the Court.

Mr Justice Moor said it was ‘quite impossible’ for the respondents to have acted in the same way and so the petitions were deemed improper and the clients will have to now reissue proceedings

Post lockdown online searches on ‘how to get a divorce’ have increased, but professional and specialist family divorce solicitors warn of the pitfalls of the quick online divorce or the cheap DIY offering.

What are the risks with DIY and cheap online divorces?

  • Not all fees are included so the hidden costs can soon mount up.
  • Matters relating to housing arrangements, finances, pensions, maintenance and children are often not taken into consideration.

“There is no ideal divorce and no tick box way through your case, each client is an individual with a unique set of circumstances,” said Pearson Solicitors Divorce Lawyer, Emma Kendall.

“As the cases thrown out of court show us clients need be wary when appointing non regulated so called ‘experts’, sometimes the cheapest option is not the best and I would always advise some personal due diligence when choosing a law firm to represent you.”

“Online divorces can also leave clients vulnerable after the event as not everything is considered at the time.  Often clients come to us to help out after the event and they end up paying twice, ” added Emma.

Even if the online divorce procedure is preferred by clients we would recommend they speak to a specialist in connection with the financial settlement of a divorce before the final Decree Absolute.

The best advice on Financial Settlements

Advice on a financial settlement is often excluded in a quick online divorce and many DIY divorcees are unaware of the financial aspects.  The right to claim financial provision against your spouse does not end with divorce either, so at Pearson Solicitors, we would always advise that a financial order is obtained.

“With the right legal advice you can make a clean break and are not left vulnerable to a claim from your spouse in the future, even after the Decree Absolute.  Only with good professional advice and a court order in place can pensions be managed properly and you achieve the right outcome for you with no comebacks,” said Emma Kendall.

If you decide to use the online divorce procedure, we would strongly recommend that you ask a specialist divorce lawyer for advice in connection with the financial aspects of it before you obtain the final Decree Absolute.

Contact our Family Lawyers

If you need advice on a divorce or a financial settlement including pension arrangement contact our Divorce and Family Law Solicitors for no-obligation chat.  Call 0161 785 3500 or email family@pearsonlegal.co.uk

Please note that the information and opinions contained in this article are not intended to be comprehensive, nor to provide legal advice. No responsibility for its accuracy or correctness is assumed by Pearson Solicitors and Financial Advisers Ltd or any of its members or employees. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking, or refraining from taking, any action as a result of this article.

Written by Emma Kendall

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