Good Divorce Week 2022
At a great time of financial and economic flux, and post-COVID-19 backlogs, the family justice system is facing immense pressure. Good Divorce Week 2022, aims to bring awareness to the issues faced by the family justice system and proposes alternative routes to reach agreements outside of the courts.
What is Good Divorce Week 2022?
Good Divorce Week is an annual campaign run by Resolution. Resolution is a professional body made up of family justice professionals whose aim is to resolve the legal issues separating families face. Their aim is to help make the process of divorce amicable and constrictive, ideally keeping cases out of court.
The theme for Good Divorce Week 2022 is ‘Ending the Family Court Crisis’.
In recent years the number of cases that are going to the Family Courts is increasing, however, there have also been cuts to legal aid and court resources.
As a result, legal professionals have found it is taking much longer to process a case through the Family Courts. Hearings have been delayed or canceled at the last minute, usually happening after significant costs have already been paid by the client. Additionally, hearing dates have been scheduled far into the future at a time that is not desirable for the client. Finally, there have been delays in processing applications.
Delays in the Divorce Process
Recent figures from the Office for National Statistics have revealed that 10% of divorces were granted in 2021 in comparison to 2020. This is likely due to the COVID pandemic.
In addition, His Majesty’s Court, and Tribunal Service release statics every quatre. The most recent static to be released is for the period of April to June 2022.
In this period, divorce and dissolution applications that were started under the old law meant the average time from petition to Decree Nisi was 36 weeks. This is 12 weeks longer than the same period in 2021. From petition to Degree Absolute the process is on average 56 weeks. This is 7 weeks longer than the same period in 2021.
For the same period, it took on average 46 weeks for private children’s cases to reach a final order. This is a 6 weeks increase compared to the same period from last year.
Since 2016 the time it takes for cases to reach final order has been increasing year on year, a worrying statistic as delays could have a significant impact on children and family relationships.
Due to delays in processing divorces and delays in reaching a resolution regarding marital finances, many couples have not been able to reach an amicable conclusion. As a result, the delays create a circle where it results in more cases going to the courts, which only adds further strain, causing further delays.
No-Fault Divorce Statistics
As of the 6th of April 2022, no-fault divorce replaced the old divorce process. Although the new process strives to remove blame from the divorce process, allowing for couples to have an amicable divorce. Read more about no-fault divorce here. However, not long enough has passed for any real and useful insights to be drawn due to the processes taking a long time to reach the final resolution.
The Goals of Good Divorce Week 2022
The goal of Good Divorce Week 2022 is to seek awareness of the struggles the Family Court is facing. In addition, it aims to make people aware of out-of-court options to help resolve. Good Divorce Week 2022 asks for government funding and support to help bring awareness to the issue.
Alternative Options to Going Through the Court
One of the main purposes of Good Divorce Week is to make couples looking for a divorce aware of alternative dispute resolutions (ADR). With the new law that allows some press releases regarding divorces, ADR provides a completely private and cost-effective way to come to an agreement outside of the courts. Some of the following options of cost-effective routes to resolve a disagreement outside of the court are:
Some solicitors would argue that mediation is the least contentious and most cost-effective way to make decisions, usually for financial arrangements and decisions about children. Mediation is a flexible, voluntary, and confidential process that involves a neutral, trained 3rd party, assisting you to try to help both parties reach a negotiated settlement.
If couples arrive at an agreement, this can then be converted into a court order, but you will not necessarily have to go to court as a judge can approve the agreement on paper.
Like mediation, collaborative law is voluntary and confidential. It involves the parties to dispute, each instructing collaboratively trained solicitors. Both parties and their solicitors must sign a participation agreement. This commits all of them to resolve the dispute without involving the court. The process is carried out through a series of meetings.
Arbitration offers a form in which a couple can appoint a qualified person to adjudicate their disputes. This process is speedy, cost-effective, and private. Arbitration takes place in a less formal setting such as a solicitor’s office. The final binding nature of an arbitration award can also make it an attractive option. The award is usually converted into a financial consent order which is then formalised by the court.
If you are unsure of which route is best for you during your divorce, our family law solicitors will be able to advise you on your specific case.
How Cartwright King’s Divorce Solicitors Can Help?
In most cases, court proceedings aren’t necessary as long as negotiations are handled with care and understanding. Our solicitors can help you during each step of the divorce process, working with you to get your desired outcome.
Our dedicated family law solicitors have helped many clients across the UK through their divorce and separation proceedings. This includes financial settlement hearings and children disputes. We have a long history of finding compromises that work for everyone.
Contact us today for expert help and advice.
All advice is correct at time of publication.