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Divorce and Separation Agreements Solicitors

When a marriage or relationship breaks up, it can be physically and emotionally draining.

There will often many factors to consider, from how to manage or divide property and savings to who will be responsible for paying bills and mortgage payments going forwards.

Finally, if you have children, then childcare arrangements will need to be put in place and agreed upon.

A divorce or separation agreement helps put these agreements in place in a legal way.



What is the difference between a Separation Agreement and Divorce?

When a marriage or civil partnership breaks down, you do not have to have a divorce either immediately or indefinitely.

Reasons for not getting a divorce may be:


  • because it is against your religion
  • because you have been married for less than 12 months
  • because of convenience


Unlike a divorce, a separation agreement allows you to live apart but remain married. The purpose is to reach a voluntary agreement with your spouse in regards to property, investments and children.

You can incorporate this into a separation agreement or deed of separation to formalise the decisions you have made jointly.

A separation agreement can also be useful to make arrangements before a divorce is finalised.

Meanwhile, a divorce (or dissolution in the case of a civil partnership) marks the legal end of a marriage or civil partnership.

At Rotheras our focus is on listening to you and the outcomes you want to achieve from the process. You will receive advice and support from a member of our family law solicitors who specialises in your situation.

Whether you are married, in a civil partnership or cohabiting we can help you.



Is a Separation Agreement legally binding?

Separation Agreements are legal contracts between both spouses. However, this does not mean they are technically legally binding.

As a result, this means that they are not easy to enforce. However, it is useful to note that separation agreements that have been drawn up correctly and fairly have upheld in court proceedings when challenged.

A Separation Agreement is a contract that both spouses enter voluntarily. The courts have no decision on the outcome of them. The purpose is to set forth the arrangement of property, investments and children.

For example, who pay the mortgage/rent and bills. Who has access to the children and when. And what happens to any shared assets in a marriage such as a house or car.

Whilst they are not technically legally binding, they are legal contracts. If the agreement has been negotiated fairly and written correctly, it could be enforced by the courts.

At Rotheras, our divorce lawyers can help draw up and negotiate a separation agreement.



Do I need a solicitor for a divorce?

You do not need to use a solicitor for a divorce. These are generally called DIY divorces.

However, it is advisable to at least see legal advice even when applying for a divorce without a solicitor. This will add some insurance that you are completing the process legally so that you do not waste time and money.

Typically, DIY divorces are a good solution when the breakdown of the marriage is amicable and uncomplicated between both spouses.

On the other hand, if during the course of your marriage you acquired large assets or investments (such as property like a family home). Or the marriage resulted in children. Then seeking a solicitor would be advised. Even if the breakdown of the marriage is amicable.

This is because sharing up of assets, and deciding the responsibilities for any children, can have a big impact on both spouses future. It is important that this is negotiated fairly.



Can I get legal aid for a divorce?

Legal aid is no longer an option for most areas of family law in England or Wales. The only exception for this is in cases of domestic abuse, financial abuse, violence or child abduction.

However, means-tested legal aid can be available for Mediation sessions.

If you think you may be entitled to legal aid for a divorce, contact our family lawyers who will be able to advise based on your circumstances. It may be the case that you will have to provide evidence to support your claim for legal aid.



Why choose Rotheras for Divorce and Separation Agreements?

Where possible we will suggest alternative dispute resolution methods such as collaborative law, mediation, negotiation or arbitration. This is so an agreement is reached which avoids any litigation costs by going to court.

Where court is unavoidable, we will be on hand throughout to support and guide you through the process.

If specialist advice on tax, trusts, pensions and property is required, we can help you.

Our family law team includes members of Resolution and a fully qualified collaborative law solicitor. We are also Law Society Children Panel members.

We can assist in negotiating child arrangements after a divorce or separation.

We can assist with injunctions such as non-molestation orders and occupation orders in cases of domestic violence.

We can also advise on any business or commercial issues that may arise from divorce or separation.



Areas of Family Law Rotheras can help in:

Contact our Family Law Team

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Paul Cobb

“We handle clients with sensitivity and understanding throughout”

Paul Cobb
Head of Family Law

If you’re happy then we’re happy too.

4.8 218 reviews

Posted 27/01/2020

"Impressive group with expertise in both matrimonial finance cases and children matters. A strong childcare team handles cases involving physical and emotional abuse, as well as fatalities. Well versed in matters with international aspects, Hague Convention cases, as well as adoption and guardianship issues.

Chambers UK, 2018

Posted 27/01/2020

Anton Balkitis frequently represents the operators of both goods and passenger vehicles in court proceedings. Clients remark: "He has a commercial understanding of real-life issues and will always provide a balanced view

Chambers UK, 2019

Posted 27/01/2020

Impressive group with expertise in both matrimonial finance cases and children matters. A strong childcare team handles cases involving physical and emotional abuse, as well as fatalities. Well versed in matters with international aspects, Hague Convention cases, as well as adoption and guardianship issues.

Chambers UK, 2018

Posted 02/06/2020

Chris Powell at Rotheras was recommended to us by a trusted associate within the Transport Industry; without doubt we wouldn’t have had the excellent outcome we did without his and his team’s involvement. The level of professionalism, expert advice and assistance was faultless; we felt reassured and well informed throughout the whole process. It was a pleasure to do business with him and would highly recommend his services!

Julian Brindley - John Brindley Ltd

Posted 12/08/2020

The team at Rotheras, and Mr Powell in particular, have provided us with an outstanding service. We are extremely grateful for the help and support they gave us in dealing with issues relating to our transport operations and our goods vehicle operators licence. Mr Powell was professional, knowledgable, efficient and effective. He quickly understood our business and the problem we had. He responded with sensible advice and acted quickly on our behalf to resolve the matter. I cannot thank him enough for his help and I would recommend Mr Powell, and the Rotheras team, without hesitation. I am extremely grateful for the help they gave us.

Richard Hitchcock - Hitchcock & King

Posted 12/08/2020

I would highly recommend James Briggs, solicitor at Rotheras. He has been extremely helpful, patient and thorough whilst helping me with affairs following the death of my husband. Even during lockdown (covid) he maintained communication and kept me informed of what was happening. He successfully achieved the outcome I needed and I would not hesitate to recommend him.

Yvonne Gold

Posted 30/09/2020

We are in the middle of launching our own packaging agency and contacted Rotheras for some professional legal advice with regards to contracts. After an initial call with Billy, he made it clear what we needed and asked plenty of questions to understand what it was we needed. He was very responsive to our questions, whether it be over the phone or via emails and made the process really simple. We had little experience in this area so it was fantastic to work with Billy, who explained everything concisely. We were also really pleased with the quick turnaround and great value offered. Would thoroughly recommend working with Rotheras.

Tom Burden, Director of Rightbox Ltd

Posted 30/09/2020

Billy understood our requirement from the get go and really nailed down on what we needed in our commercial agency agreement. Billy kept us informed every step of the way and showed great professionalism. We would recommend his services to any start-up business who is in need of legal advice and guidance with commercial contracts.

Axl Barber, Sales Director of Rightbox Ltd

Posted 11/02/2021

I was extremely pleased with the service that Kerry provided in order to sell my mothers house. Good, prompt communication and all questions dealt with or answered as requested. Consequently I would recommend yours services to others.

Adam Stevens

Posted 25/03/2021

Anton has substantial experience acting for commercial goods hauliers and other transport operators. He advises on a range of contentious issues including operator licence, maintenance and tachograph matters, with a wealth of experience acting in public inquiries before Traffic Commissioners."Anton is a highly informed and personable lawyer.

Chambers UK, 2020

Posted 25/03/2021

Chris Powell focuses his practice on road transport issues, regularly representing haulage, transport and logistics companies. He has considerable experience in regulatory matters involving operator licences and compliance failings, as well as more serious criminal investigations relating to fraud.

Chambers UK, 2020

Posted 07/06/2021

Dear Sally, I can’t thank you enough for today! You took the pressure off me and I felt so looked after and understood everything that was happening. Thank you so much!

Kelly Neave

Contact our Family Law Team

Our Divorce Law Team

Ann-Marie Bowman

Ann-Marie Bowman

Ann-Marie Bowman is Partner and Chairwoman of Nottingham based law firm Rotheras. Ann-Marie remains highly committed to her fee-earning work in Family law, dealing with all aspects of children matters.

Paul Cobb

Paul Cobb

Paul Cobb is Head of the Family department and is a family and matrimonial solicitor, specialising in collaborative law, at Nottingham-based law firm Rotheras Solicitors.

Rebecca Emeleus

Rebecca Emeleus

Rebecca Emeleus is Talent & Resourcing Partner at Rotheras Solicitors. Rebecca has over 25 years’ of litigation experience and is based within the family team in our Lace Market office.

Joanne Millward

Joanne Millward

Joanne Millward is a Family Law solicitor with over 20 years’ experience dealing in all areas of Family Law.

Sally Hartland

Sally Hartland

Sally Hartland is a Family, Matrimonial and Child Law specialist based at our offices in The Lace Market. Sally specialises and regularly represents both parents and grandparents in care proceedings.

Ruth Tyas

Ruth Tyas

Ruth specialises in all aspects of family law and since 2010 she has been an accredited specialist in private law children matters and in domestic abuse where urgent protective remedies are required.

Emma Adcock

Emma Adcock

Emma Adcock is a family and matrimonial specialist based at The Lace Market and West Bridgford offices.

Rebecca Lister

Rebecca Lister

Rebecca Lister is a Solicitor within our Family Department and specialises in children and child care proceedings, regularly representing parents during care proceedings.

Chris Bradshaw

Chris Bradshaw

Chris specialises in children matters and provides support to Ann-Marie Bowman.

Beccy Rodham

Beccy Rodham

Beccy Rodham is a Senior Paralegal in Rotheras Family Law department and is based at our Lace Market office.

Susan White

Susan White

Susan White is a Senior Paralegal in Rotheras Debt Recovery and Family Law department.

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