0345 604 4911

Collaborative Divorce Solicitors

"A class act"

Legal 500, 2018/19

"A class act"

Legal 500, 2018/19

If you and your former partner choose to divorce, reaching an agreement doesn’t have to be difficult and confrontational. Collaborative divorce is an out of court process where you, your ex-partner and your lawyers sit down and try to work out an agreement together. This process can be used in both agreeing a financial settlement and/or child arrangements for the future.

Collaborative family law could be the best route for you if:

  • Both you and your partner want to come to a solution together
  • You can both discuss matters openly and productively
  • You can have honest conversations about the issues in your divorce or separation throughout the entire process

The collaborative process involves the signing of a contract saying that you will reach an agreement and a series of round table discussions with lawyers representing each party’s interests. Once a financial settlement has been reached it will become part of a court order or separation agreement, which can be legally binding. This means that if one of you disagrees later on, it can be difficult to change the terms of the agreement.

Our collaboratively trained lawyers will use their experience and skill to make the discussions and negotiations run as smoothly as possible to the benefit of both you and your ex-partner. In divorces which involve children and co-parenting, collaborative family law can help the family maintain a good relationship which makes life more comfortable in the future for everyone involved. Collaborative divorce is usually also quicker, more cost effective and less stressful than if you were to go through the court process.

Our family law team is very experienced in divorce matters – both in and out of court. We are highly-ranked by independent legal guides Chambers & Partners and the Legal 500, and are widely recognised as one of the leading divorce firms in the country. We have offices in major cities throughout England, and will work with you on a personal level, providing no-nonsense, honest advice on the best options for your situation.

If you’d like to talk to us about the family law services we offer, please don’t hesitate to speak with a member of our team. 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
Collaborative Divorce - More Information
    • Do I Have To Speak To My Ex-Partner?
    • When a relationship breaks down, it can be difficult to speak to your former partner. You may not want to speak to them at all, or even to sit in the same room. However, if this is the case it is still possible to settle your divorce out of court.

      Processes such as mediation and arbitration can be completed without you seeing or speaking to your former partner at all (shuttle mediation for instance works by an impartial mediator speaking to you both in turn, while you are both sat in separate rooms).

      However, where children are involved it can often be beneficial to be able to agree your divorce settlement face to face. Where couples are able to do this, it can help build the foundation for a good working relationship in the future.

      If you’re worried about speaking to or seeing your former partner during the divorce process, please speak to our experienced team for advice on your options. Call us on 0345 604 4911, or get in touch online and we'll get back to you as soon as possible.

    • Why Should I Choose Irwin Mitchell?
    • We are recognised by independent legal guides Chambers & Partners and The Legal 500 as one of the UK's leading family law teams. Our reputation has been built up over decades of dealing with divorce cases of all kinds, including complex international cases and divorces involving high net worth individuals.

      With family law experts based in major cities across England, our team includes specialist mediators, collaborative divorce solicitors, and one of the first trained arbitration lawyers in the UK. We can help you decide which option is best for you, support you through the process and ensure that your best interests are protected.

      We pride ourselves on our sensitive but no nonsense approach to divorce cases. We’ll be honest with you about what is likely to happen, and will fight hard to get you a divorce settlement that’s fair.

      To find out more about how we can help you, call us on 0345 604 4911 or contact us online and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Collaborative Divorce?

Collaborative divorce is where you, your former partner and your lawyers sit down and work together to reach an agreement over your divorce settlement. It can be used for settling both the financial aspects of your divorce, and the future arrangements for your children.

The collaborative divorce process involves you both signing a contract which says that you will reach an agreement. You then have a number of round table discussions with your lawyers present, where you all try and negotiate a settlement. Once you have agreed matters, it will then form part of a legally binding court order or separation agreement.

Collaborative divorce is for you if there is still some trust between you and your ex-partner, and a desire to reach an agreement that’s fair.

Our specially trained collaborative divorce solicitors can help support you throughout the process every step of the way. For more information please 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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What If I'm Worried My Ex-Partner Will Not Be Honest?

The collaborative divorce process can only work if there is trust between you and your ex-partner.

If you don’t trust them, collaborative divorce is probably not for you because if the process fails you will have to pay for the unsuccessful attempt, on top of future court proceedings.

If we sense at any point that your partner is not being honest, we will advise you on your options. It may also be possible to re-open your case, if it becomes clear at a later point that your former partner was not honest about their finances at the time of your divorce. In 2015 we took two cases to the Supreme Court on behalf of two women whose husbands misled them over their wealth during the divorce process.

If you have any concerns about whether your ex-partner will be honest, 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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What Are The Benefits Of Collaborative Divorce?

Compared to the court process, collaborative divorce has a number of benefits:

  • Quicker
    The court process can typically take at least six months, but it’s not uncommon for it to take longer than this (up to two years in some cases). Collaborative divorce can be as short as two to four months.
  • Cost effective
    As you don’t need to go to court, you will save on court and legal fees.
  • Less stressful
    The collaborative process is less confrontational and much more “civilised” than going to court.
  • Better relationship with your former partner
    It can help to maintain a good working relationship with your former partner for the future – particularly important if children are involved.

If you’d like to find out more about whether collaborative divorce is for you, please call us on 0345 604 4911 to talk with one of our family law specialists, 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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