Thankfully court proceedings are an unnecessary last resort for most couples but may be the right option if your spouse is unreasonable or unfair or they won’t accept that you are entitled to receive what is due to you.
When court proceedings are necessary then you need someone on your side to be firm and tough (without being unduly aggressive which is unnecessary, counter-productive and increases the stresses, tensions and costs).
Requirements of court proceedings:
- You pay a court fee to issue court proceedings, or you can respond to an application made by your former partner but there is no advantage in being the Applicant or the Respondent.
- You must attend court
- You must comply with the orders made by the court.
- You give evidence on oath to tell the truth.
Advantages of court proceedings:
- There is a structured timetable to work to. The court willl not let things drift.
- The court will take over the organisation of the next steps and timescale in which evidence must be filed.
- You get a final result on a final date – so you know when you can stop banging your head against a brick wall!
- You will have had your say.
Whatever the opinions and offers made beforehand then you at least find out what the court answer was. Good news if you have done better than you were offered by your former partner.
If your spouse or partner does not accept that you should receive what you are entitled to then court proceedings may be your best option.
Disadvantages of court proceedings:
- Uncertainty of what order will be made by any particular Judge on any given day (or by the same Judge on a different day!).
- Delay – court cases take the longest time to resolve. This will affect other parts of your life.
- You don’t want to spend too much of your life with lawyers (however nice I think I am!) or dealing with correspondence.
- You will get really irritated by the contents of the other side’s letters.
- I am not sure if anyone has ever been convinced by the points made in correspondence by the other side.
- It is one side against the other.
- You get an answer from the court. You may not think it is the right answer.
At best it is “we win – they lose”. At worst it is “everyone loses”, apart from the lawyers. As Dennis Lehane (US writer of The Wire) said, “Nobody wins. One side just loses more slowly that the other.” This is probably more accurate.
To use the court to ensure you get what you are entitled to then
- Contact me on 01223 521 051 to discuss your specific circumstances to see how I can help
- email me a question at firstname.lastname@example.org
- See if I can help if you are worried about a court case or a hearing or feel you need a second opinion or feel you are getting nowhere 01223 421051
- I have over 25 years of family court advocacy experience
- I am on the Resolution Panel as an ‘Accredited Specialist Family Lawyer’ specialising in court advocacy in complex financial cases and in children’s cases.
- I am on the Law Society Family Law Panel