Divorce Solicitors In Harrow & London

The divorce process can be a difficult and traumatic experience to go through at any time in your life. And with different areas of divorce to consider, alongside arrangements for children and rights for family, the process can bring added strain and difficulties.

For these reasons, divorce demands expert legal advice and representation to help you through whatever challenges your divorce case brings.

This page contains information to help you understand some key issues surrounding divorce, including the divorce process itself, how long the process will take, and how much it will cost.

Leading Divorce Solicitors In Harrow & London

With decades of experience, Osbourne Pinner in Harrow and London is a team of leading divorce solicitors in London & Harrow. We’re experts in divorce and family law, offering a wide range of professional divorce and family law services from our offices in central London’s Piccadilly and Harrow.

With a smart and proactive approach, our divorce team is always on hand to give you exceptional legal advice and guide you through the divorce process with confidence and peace of mind.

Take the first step by booking your initial confidential and free consultation by calling us on 0203 983 5080, emailing [email protected], or completing our contact form.

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Legal Separation or No-Fault Divorce?

Going through a divorce is never easy, and it can be an even more complicated process if emotions between spouses are running high and animosity sets in. Fortunately, the introduction of no-fault divorce in the UK allows couples to end their marriage with little to no hostility.

Under the Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020, fault-based divorce was once the only option for couples seeking to end their marriage. This process meant one spouse had to prove that the other was at fault for the irretrievable marriage breakdown under the five grounds for divorce: adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, 2-year separation with consent, or 5-year separation. Going into this would often lead to anger and lengthy legal battles that further strained the relationship between the spouses.

Legal Separation

Legal separation (or judicial separation) takes a step back from full divorce and allows couples to separate their assets and finances without officially ending the marriage. To make finances legally binding, a financial order (or consent order) must be submitted.

This option can be beneficial for couples who aren’t ready for divorce or want to work on their relationship. But legal separation isn’t without its problems. Further tension and legal battles can happen if one party decides to contest the separation agreement.

No-Fault Divorce

The introduction of No-fault Divorce in 2022 allows couples to end their marriage without blaming either party. Instead, they can confirm that the marriage has broken down and have a cooling-off period before the divorce Final Order is made. This new approach is designed to help reduce hostility and make divorce less stressful for both parties, especially if children are involved.

As leading divorce solicitors in Harrow & London, we understand divorce and separation can be difficult for everyone involved for different reasons. That’s why our London & Harrow divorce solicitors offer our clients a range of services, helping you to navigate the process, including legal advice, mediation, and representation in court if necessary. Our experienced team of divorce solicitors can help couples to choose the best option for their situation, whether it’s no-fault divorce or legal separation.

Contact us today to speak to our team about your options.

Meet the Team

Solicitor Portrait

Anita Mary Shepheard

Senior Family Solicitor

Solicitor Portrait

Rashmika (Rita) Mehta

Head of Family Law

Solicitor Portrait - YEE HAN

Yee Han

Senior Family Associates

Transparent Fees for Divorce Solicitors in Harrow and London

As leading divorce solicitors in Harrow and London, Osbourne Pinner London & Harrow prides itself on being open and transparent over pricing for every client. As such, we offer a range of fixed fee and hourly rate payment options, as outlined below.

You can also have an initial consultation with us so we can find out more about your situation, and you can learn more about what we can do for you to help and support you through the divorce process. This consultation is free and confidential and can take place through Zoom or face-to-face in our London or Harrow offices.

Fixed Fee Divorce Areas

We charge fixed fees in the given areas

Hourly Rate Charges

Exceptional legal consultancy

Contact us today to speak to our team for more information about our fixed fees and hourly rates.

The Grounds of Divorce in Harrow and London

In England and Wales, there is currently only one ground for divorce, which is the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. However, this must be supported by one of five grounds (or reasons) for divorce, which are:

Adultery

When one spouse has had sexual intercourse with someone of the same or opposite sex outside of the marriage, and the other spouse finds it impossible to live with them. However, adultery is not valid as an acceptable reason for divorce if the couple continues to live together for longer than six months after the adultery becomes known.

Unreasonable Behaviour

When one spouse behaves in a way that the other spouse finds unacceptable or difficult to live with. This behaviour can include physical, emotional, or verbal abuse, substance abuse or addiction, or spousal neglect.

Desertion

When one spouse has left or abandoned the other without their agreement, without good reason, and with the intention of ending the relationship. Desertion is rarely used as a reason as it can be difficult to prove and must be the case for a minimum of two years before a divorce can be applied for.

2 Years Separation With Consent

When the spouses have mutually agreed to live apart for at least two years, and both spouses agree to the divorce.

5 Years Separation

When the spouses have continuously lived apart for at least five years, and one spouse wants a divorce even if the other disagrees.

These five grounds will apply to most divorces, but the ‘no-fault divorce’ law effectively removes the concept of fault – and the five accepted grounds – from the divorce process.

Contact us today to speak to our team about divorce grounds and how they could affect your case.

The Complete Divorce Process in the UK

The divorce solicitors in Harrow and London of Osbourne Pinner are always ready to give you all the information you need before and during your divorce from our London & Harrow offices. Here’s a brief overview of the different stages throughout the divorce process.

Acknowledgement of Service

Once the divorce application is filed, the court will serve an Acknowledgement of Service to the other spouse. The Acknowledgement can be delivered by post or in person, and the other spouse has seven days to respond. With the Acknowledgement in place, both spouses have 20 weeks to adjust and make financial or child arrangements before the next stage.

Final Order (formerly ‘Decree Absolute’)

When the 6-week period ends, you can apply for the Final Order (FO), which completes the divorce process. A court typically grants this within a week and sends you a confirmation certificate. When you receive this, you’ll no longer be legally married.

Divorce Application

This is the first stage of the divorce process. One spouse must file a divorce application with the court, stating the grounds for divorce and including any other relevant details if the divorce is not a ‘no-fault divorce’. Applications can also be made jointly.

Conditional Order (formerly ‘Decree Nisi’)

After the 20-week period, if both spouses still agree to the divorce, the next stage is issuing a Conditional Order (CO). This order confirms that the court sees no reason why the divorce shouldn’t proceed. On the same day the CO is issued, you begin a 6-week waiting period for your Final Order to be granted.

It’s important to note that the divorce process can vary depending on the case’s unique factors and how willing both parties are to cooperate. At Osbourne Pinner, our London & Harrow divorce solicitors can provide support and guidance throughout the process to help you achieve the best possible outcome.

Contact us today to speak to our divorce team for more information.

How Long Does a Divorce Process Take?

The divorce process, and how long it takes, depends on the facts of each case. There could be many complexities, making it difficult to assign an exact time frame. Usually, a divorce takes roughly six months before a Final Order is granted. However, in some cases, it can take up to 10 months.

The length of any divorce process can vary and depends on several factors, including the case’s complexity, the willingness of both parties to cooperate, and the timescales of the courts.

In the UK, the minimum time for a no-fault divorce is currently six months from the date of the initial application to the date of the final order. This period is intended to provide a cooling-off period for couples to reflect on their decision and seek counselling if necessary. But this is only a minimum timeframe. Many divorce cases can take longer, depending on the circumstances, such as disputes over finances, property, or child custody, as the court will need to be involved and make decisions on these matters.

Another factor affecting the length of the divorce process is the willingness of both parties to cooperate. If both parties are happy to negotiate and agree on all matters, the divorce process can be much quicker. But if one or both parties are uncooperative or refuse to compromise, the divorce process can become more complicated and last longer, potentially up to 12 months.

At Osbourne Pinner divorce solicitors in London & Harrow, we know every divorce case is different, and there is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ timeline. That’s why our divorce solicitors in London work closely with you to understand your situation and provide the support and guidance you need throughout the process so that you can move on with your life as soon as possible.

Contact us today to speak to our team about your own circumstances.

Other Related Services From Osbourne Pinner Divorce Solicitors

Divorce can be a difficult and emotional process and will often involve different legal issues beyond the actual dissolution of the marriage. At Osbourne Pinner, we understand the complexities of divorce and offer a range of related services to help our clients get through this challenging time.

Our team of divorce solicitors are experienced in handling a range of legal issues related to divorce, and we work to provide our clients with the guidance and support they need. Here are just some of the additional services we offer.

Divorce Consent Order

Our family law experts will prepare a consent order to get consent from both spouses confirming they have agreed about their marital assets and finances. A consent order should only be prepared professionally by a divorce solicitor, and the Osbourne Pinner team can help you draft the most effective consent order.

Divorce & Financial Settlements

Divorce financial settlements are used as an agreement to determine how financial assets and debts will be distributed between each spouse in the divorce. Our divorce solicitors can prepare your financial settlement as part of the larger divorce agreement, ensuring any financial issues are settled through negotiation to avoid court appearances.

Child Arrangement Order

A Child Arrangement Order is a court order detailing the specific arrangements for children in divorce cases. It regulates where the child will live, who they’ll spend time with, and who they’ll have contact with after the divorce. Our divorce solicitors know how challenging child arrangement orders can be and will guide you through the process with as little stress as possible.

Legal Help For Abusive Relationships

Both women and men may face abusive relationships in their marriages. In such marriages, a partner is responsible for abusing their spouse mentally or physically, which can have severe physical and mental health implications. Osbourne Pinner has a team of domestic violence solicitors who can step in with any Non-Molestation, Occupation, or Prohibited Steps orders.

Grandparents Rights

Grandparents play an important role in the lives of grandchildren, and divorce can severely restrict or disconnect this relationship. The family courts have recognised this importance and its positive impact. Our specialist solicitors can help grandparents resolve disputes and gain vital access to grandchildren with a Contact Order.

Contact us today to speak to our team for more information in these areas.

Divorce Solicitors Frequently Asked Questions

A Prenuptial Agreement (prenup) or a Postnuptial Agreement (postnup) is a legally binding contract that outlines each person’s financial rights and responsibilities in the event of a divorce or death. Prenups are drawn up before a couple gets married, while postnups are created after marriage.

Prenups are often associated with high-net-worth clients. But anyone who has significant assets or debts can benefit from this type of agreement, while postnups can be drawn up if circumstances change during the marriage.

In England and Wales, the irretrievable breakdown of the marriage must be supported by one of five grounds (or reasons) for divorce: adultery, unreasonable behaviour, desertion, 2 years separation with consent, or 5 years separation.

But from 2022, there is a No-fault Divorce which allows couples to end their marriage without one spouse blaming the other. Instead, they can confirm that the marriage has irretrievably broken down and have a cooling-off period before the divorce final order.

A financial agreement gives both parties certainty and security regarding future financial positions after divorce. It can take up to four weeks for a Financial Agreement to be approved and only comes into effect when the divorce Final Order is confirmed.
In UK divorce cases, assets, including ​​cars, properties, furniture, or jewellery, are classed as either matrimonial or non-matrimonial assets. This categorisation affects how they are distributed during the divorce proceedings. In most cases, if one spouse owned an asset before marriage, it would be considered a non-matrimonial asset.
The answer to this is not always straightforward. It depends on several factors, including the age of the children, the relationship between the parents, and even the country to which you plan to relocate. In most cases, you must get permission from everyone with parental responsibility for a child or from a court before moving abroad with the child.
In most divorce cases, pensions are taken into consideration together with other financial assets of the marriage. Alongside other assets, sharing any pensions is decided by a separate financial agreement. However, a court can issue a Pension Sharing order if spouses want to split benefit or contribution pension funds after divorce, but not state pensions.

There are many factors to consider when deciding whether to divorce or stay married. Depending on the circumstances, you can divorce if you feel the marriage has broken down irretrievably and can cite reasonable grounds. But the ‘no-fault divorce’ can be used for couples who don’t want to assign blame or a specific reason for the marriage breaking down.

In other circumstances, a legal separation can allow you to separate assets and finances without officially ending the marriage while giving you both time to work on the marriage if you want. However, children and finances can often complicate issues further, and you should be sure of all the implications before starting divorce proceedings.

Whatever questions you have surrounding any aspect of divorce, we always recommend speaking to qualified, experienced divorce solicitors who can give you all the answers you need.

Contact us today to speak to our team about your divorce case.

Areas We Cover In London

Osbourne Pinner Solicitors operates from offices in Warwick Street, near Piccadilly Circus in central London, and on College Road, Harrow, in northwest London, directly opposite Harrow-On-The-Hill underground and overground train station.

Regularly acting on behalf of clients who live in central London, including the City of London, Westminster, Leicester Square, Camden, Oxford Circus, Hackney, Islington, Chelsea, Southwark, Victoria, Lambeth, Wandsworth, Kensington, Knightsbridge, Hammersmith, and Fulham, or Greater London within the M25, including Holborn, Edgware, Harrow, Uxbridge, Wembley, Barnet, Edmonton, Enfield, Ilford, Barking, Bexleyheath, Bromley, Croydon, Morden, Surbiton, Brentford, Teddington, and Twickenham – you can contact us at either location to book your initial free and confidential consultation.