0345 604 4911

International Divorce Solicitors

"Highly experienced and approachable"

Chambers & Partners, 2019

"Highly experienced and approachable"

Chambers & Partners, 2019

If you're looking to divorce and you or your partner live or work - or have business interests, property or financial assets - in countries outside England and Wales, it is important to get advice and guidance from a specialist international family law team.

There are a number of factors that can make international divorce cases complex:

  • Family law varies greatly between countries
  • Choosing the right place to have your case heard can have a huge impact on the outcome of your divorce
  • Timing is crucial in international matters
  • Even if your divorce is processed in the UK, you may need to deal with multiple foreign legal systems to settle overseas assets and childcare arrangements

Our family law solicitors are experienced hands when it comes to international divorce. Our team includes a Fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL), as well as a winner of the IAFL 2016 Award for Young Family Lawyers

We have led cases from countries all over the world, including Europe, the United Arab Emirates, North America, Japan, Singapore, Monaco and the British Virgin Islands. Our extensive network of foreign legal experts means you get the representation you need, wherever you need it.

Our team of family law experts can help you with international divorce advice in any of the following areas:

  • Orders concerning your children's care
  • Relocation of your children
  • Disputes over where you and your partner should get divorced
  • Financial claims that cover multiple jurisdictions
  • International pre- or post-nuptial agreements
  • Protecting your off-shore trusts and business interests
  • Your pension
  • Your property and real estate
  • Child abduction - where your child has been relocated without your consent
  • Tax and revenue implications arising from the international transfer of your funds and assets
  • Freezing assets to prevent them being dissipated or moved to another jurisdiction.

We are accredited by the independent legal guides Chambers & Partners and The Legal 500, and are widely considered to be one of the UK's leading international family law teams. With a wealth of experience dealing with high-profile international divorce cases, we promise to give you a no-nonsense, bespoke service to get you the best possible result.

If you'd like to find out more about the international family law services we offer, please call us on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.


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  • Ros Bever
  • National Head of Family Law
Meet the team
Martin Loxley
Martin Loxley Sheffield

"Absolutely fantastic", "nationally known, pragmatic, and a hard negotiator."

Legal 500, 2016
International Divorce - More Information
    • How Is The Financial Settlement Calculated?
    • When deciding a financial settlement in a divorce, a number of factors will be taken into account, including:

      • Your and your partner's assets and finances, and your needs now and in the future
      • Each of your earnings and earning capacity
      • Whether there is any foreseeable change in your or your partner's finances
      • Whether you have children, and if so, their ages and needs
      • The age of you and your partner
      • Your and your partner's health, and whether this has an effect on your ability to earn
      • The length of your marriage - including any time spent living together before you got married

      As every case is different, it's important to get expert advice as soon as possible. We have dealt with many complex financial settlements over decades as one of the UK's leading family law teams, including many cases of high-net-worth individuals and significant international assets. To get this expertise on your side, call us today on 0345 604 4911, or alternatively you can contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

    • What If I Believe My Partner Is Hiding Some Of Their Wealth?
    • It's absolutely essential that you and your partner are open and honest about your wealth during your divorce.

      The out-of-court processes for divorce - such as negotiation, mediation and collaborative law - only work properly if you and your partner give full and frank accounts of your respective financial circumstances.

      If you suspect that your partner is hiding assets, you are entitled to ask questions and seek documentation - such as bank accounts and credit card entries - relating to your concern.

      Our family law teams are experienced in handling complex and high-profile divorce cases. We know the signs that someone may not be behaving honestly and we will apply the law robustly to ensure you get the fair settlement you deserve.

      If you have any concerns that your partner is hiding some of their wealth, it's important to speak to an expert as soon as possible. Call us today on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

    • What's The Process?
    • There are seven stages to the divorce process:

      1. A divorce petition must be filed with a court by you or your partner. Whoever does this is known as the Petitioner, with the other party referred to as the Respondent
      2. The court sends the divorce documents to the Respondent
      3. The Respondent files an Acknowledgement of Service – this includes answering questions such as 'do you intend to defend the case?' and 'do you agree with the ground for jurisdiction?'
      4. The Petitioner applies for decree nisi - an order by a court stating the date on which a marriage can end, unless a good reason not to grant the divorce is produced
      5. The court sends out a Certificate of Entitlement confirming the date on which decree nisi will be pronounced
      6. The court grants the decree nisi and sends a copy to both of your solicitors
      7. The Petitioner applies for a decree absolute after six weeks and one day has passed from decree nisi being granted. This decree is a final order from the court that officially ends the marriage, allowing each party to remarry. The Petitioner can delay in making the application for example if financial arrangements have not yet been finalised.

      See our Guide To The Divorce Process for more details of these stages.

    • What Experience Do You Have Of International And High Net Worth Divorce?
    • We are one of the UK's leading family law firms, and have considerable expertise in complex, high-profile divorce cases, including ones involving significant wealth and international assets. Recent examples include:

      • Successfully representing two women in the Supreme Court whose husbands had been dishonest about their wealth during the initial divorce proceedings. This 2015 case was the first time in a generation that the UK's highest court had heard cases on the issue of non-disclosure in divorce proceedings - find out more about these cases.
      • Winning a legal battle in the Court of Appeal in 2016 for a woman who discovered her deceased partner had hidden millions of pounds of assets during the breakdown of their civil partnership - find out more about the case.

      To discuss the specific circumstances of your case, and find out how we can help, talk to our expert team today on 0345 604 4911 or get in touch online and we'll get back to you as soon as we can.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which Country Do We Have To Get Divorced In?

Choosing where to get a divorce is an important decision because the laws around separation - such as how to divide assets or arrange childcare - vary from country to country.

You may be able to choose where you get divorced, although this will depend on where you and your partner have your permanent home and where you currently live.

This area of law has seen significant legislative changes over recent years, and many cases have sought to challenge existing laws. For clear and definitive advice on this subject, it is best to speak to one of our international divorce law experts and explain your circumstances to them.

In any case of international divorce where the proceedings could take place in more than one country, speed is an important factor. If your spouse starts proceedings in one country, you may not be able to initiate them in another.

For more guidance and advice about your best options, call our international divorce solicitors today on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

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How Can I Protect Myself From Financial Claims In The Future?

Under UK law, you can protect yourself from future financial claims using a Clean Break Order. This means that both parties' financial claims against each other are dismissed so neither of them can bring any future claims against the other.

If you and your partner maintain some financial interactions after a divorce, such as child maintenance payments, however, these will remain open to future challenge.

If you are divorcing in another country, different laws will apply to making your financial settlement final, so it's important to seek expert legal advice.

For guidance on your specific circumstances, speak to our experienced international divorce law team today. We have dealt with many complex, multi-national divorces so you can be sure to get the best advice and support. Call us on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

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How Is Child Access And Custody Handled Internationally?

The law relating to the future care of your children will depend on where the children live. Where your divorce is filed may also be relevant. This area of the law is particularly complicated because families and children often move between countries, necessitating the involvement of competing legal jurisdictions.

Permission to relocate your children - or challenging abductions - will also depend on the law of a particular country. In any case with an international element where children are involved, it's important to get specific advice as soon as possible.

We've dealt with many cases of international child custody. For instance, we successfully secured the return of a child who had been retained in Malta by their father following a holiday there, after the Maltese government initially refused to return the child.

For help with any aspect of international child access or custody, call us today on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

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I live in Scotland, can Irwin Mitchell help me?

Our expert family law team works with a number of trusted partners to help our clients with family law issues in Scotland.

We’ll be your point of contact and manage the entire process for you throughout. You’ll get frequent progress updates and we’ll break down any legal jargon into plain English so you’re always in the loop.

To find out more about how we can help, give us a call on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online.

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