I have decided I want a divorce or separation…..where do I start?

You have just made a life changing decision to divorce or separate from your spouse. But now what? Often people don’t know where to turn or what to do when first making the decision to divorce or separate. Jessica Palmer, head of our North London Family Law team has set out some useful tips to help navigate these tricky early stages.

  1. Take legal advice

Firstly, it is important to get legal advice right at the outset. Any decisions you make at this early stage could have a real impact on both the financial and child arrangements. It is important to be fully armed with the facts before deciding how to proceed!

  1. Do not leave the house unless absolutely necessary and seek legal advice before doing so

Whilst it can be extremely difficult to remain in the same house as someone you are divorcing or separating from, it is important not to leave the house until you have sought legal advice. Once you leave it can be very difficult to return and it can have a knock-on impact on both the arrangements for the children and the finances.

  1. Consider mediation

Attending mediation is often a good way to get the process started. It allows you and your spouse to start having practical discussions about both the short-term and longer-term arrangements. You can discuss the divorce, finances and arrangements for the children.

  1. Protect your assets

If you have any concerns that your spouse may seek to withhold or dispose of joint assets without your consent, you may need to consider whether steps need to be taken to protect them. This will depend on the circumstances so it is important to discuss this with a specialist solicitor.

  1. Consider your emotional health

Divorce or separation is difficult for everyone, no matter what the circumstances are, so it can often be helpful to have specialist therapeutic support alongside. This will not only help you manage your emotional health but can also help with navigating the legal process and communicating effectively with your ex-spouse.


For further advice please contact our North London offices on 0207 431 8889 or Jessica Palmer on jpalmer@streathers.co.uk.

Enquiry Form

We'll only use this information to handle your enquiry and we won't share it with any third parties. For more details see our Privacy Policy