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Separating from your partner and moving forward with your life is understandably overwhelming and stressful.

That is why it is beneficial to take some key steps in preparation, before you start any proceedings. Regardless of whether your divorce is contested or uncontested, has an international element to it or whether you and your spouse run a business together, you need to be prepared.

In this article we have listed some of these steps.

  1. Obtain your marriage certificate.
    You must obtain your marriage certificate prior to commencing any divorce proceedings. If you do not have the original marriage certificate, you must attempt to obtain a certified copy from the General Register Office. If you were married in a foreign jurisdiction, you should obtain your marriage certificate issued by the country in which you married.
  2. Collect all your financial documents.
    The division of the matrimonial pot will be determined by your relevant supporting evidence. Make sure you gather all your relevant financial documents, including your joint bank account statements, tax returns and other financial documents. These all confirm and identify your assets and your debts.
  3. Consider your financial obligations.
    You should consider the financial implications of a separation and divorce in the first instance. This means that you will need to ensure relevant arrangements are in place to cover your financial obligations, this may include your mortgage, bills and expenses.
  4. Wills and Estate Planning.
    When you decide to file for a divorce, it is likely you will need to create a new Will or amend an existing one. You may have a mirroring Will or might have listed your spouse as the main beneficiary under your Will. You may also be a ‘joint tenant’ on your home, and hence your share of the property will automatically pass onto your spouse in the event of your death. It is vital that you seek independent legal advice from a Wills & Probate speicalist in the course of your divorce proceedings. Fortunately, at Specters we can assist you with this as well as your divorce.
  5. Your immigration status.
    If you are not a British national, your immigration status may be dependent on your spouse. A divorce could impact your right to remain and work in the UK. It is therefore vital that you seek immigration advice so that you better understand your position and what you may need to do.
  6. Obtain early legal advice.
    Knowledge is power. You should seek independent legal advice as early as possible so that you better understand your position in both the short and long term. This is espeically vital in respect of the division of assets and provisions for your children.

At Specters, our expert team can help you with every aspect of your divorce proceedings. We accommodate for both UK and international clients alike. To book a consultation with our specialist team, please free-call us on 0300 303 3629 or find out more about our services here.

Article by Specters Solicitor Tracey Atallah