If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

Done by Christmas: why you should file for divorce in September


Director Rita Gupta looks at why deciding to divorce now in September is important for those looking for clarity over Christmas and a fresh start in the New Year.


Why you should choose a Legal 500 or Chambers and Partners listed law firm


It's that time of year when both the UK Legal 500 and Chambers announce the top ranked lawyers and law firms in the Reading area - and we're proud to be ranked both individually and as a firm in both.

Our latest explains how our rankings in this highly respected and independent guides helps you choose the right legal team for your family law matter or divorce.


Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners : our new 2020 rankings

Legal500 and Chambers Rankings 2020 for LGFL


A quick summary of our latest rankings in the Legal 500 UK and Chambers & Partners guides for 2020.


No-deal Brexit and family law: the implications

Map UK & EU line between Brexit Law


International family law will be affected by a no-deal Brexit. Our Director Anne Leiper looks at the implications of a no-deal Brexit on international family law issues between the UK and EU member states.


Join Rita Gupta for her first MBL “Financial Remedy Cases” webinar

Clapperboard for Webinar with Rita Gupta


Join Rita Gupta for her first training seminar for legal professionals "Financial Remedy Cases - Practical Tips for Family Lawyers” - worth 1.25 CPD hours (MBL Seminars)


From our social media:

Professional couple spend £500,000 on divorce proceedings

Half a million pounds on ‘destructive and disproportionate’ divorce proceedings!


Rise of the ‘silver splitters’ drives equity release sales amongst singles

One of the results from divorce.


Child contact charity reports fall in solicitors’ referrals

The figures make for sad reading for families and legal aid.

The statistics from the National Association of Child Contact Centres (NACCC) showing the fall in referrals from solicitors are a clear indication of the consequences of legal aid reforms for families experiencing separation, according to the NACCC.


The Glasgow Uni boffins trying their hands at designing law-themed board games

People playing with the law!


Supreme court's Lady Hale becomes star of children's book

Lady Hale's done it again. Let's hear it for women in law!


Man who sued ex-wife's lover for breaking up their marriage awarded £605,000

A modern case of using an antiquated law - the ‘Homewrecker’ law in North Carolina.


Struggling financially after divorce? Here's what to do

If you’re not sure how to handle all of these post-divorce financial tasks, this guide will walk you through some of the key steps you need to take.


Two generations of divorce: parents and their adult children

Knowing when to give advice and when to just be there is crucial.


Women’s air launches campaign aimed at teenage girls at risk of relationship abuse

Women’s Aid said that girls are more likely to engage with digital resources than call a helpline, which is why they created a website instead, and are also working on an online chat service.


Johnson pledges to reintroduce domestic abuse legislation

Now lets hope it really does come into law!


University of Glasgow academics design board game to explain law on marriage

University of Glasgow academics are developing a board game to help the public negotiate the complex legal world of marriage.


Bar Council teams up with AI start-up to launch ‘anti-harassment app’

One way to embrace technology.


Top 5 tips for going into business with your spouse

figures show that 42% of marriages break down, which makes divorce a very common process. It’s therefore important to take the necessary steps to divorce-proof your business at the outset if you are planning to build a company with your spouse.

Think of the children: Divorce is difficult - but that doesn't mean it can't be handled well

This article outlines ways to protect children from stress during a bitter divorce battle:


Families Need Fathers Scotland calls for radical change in post-separation parenting arrangements

The Manifesto: The Way Forward for Scotland" calls for changes in the law and legal procedures to “promote the positive value to children of shared parenting”. 


Here’s what young people say helped them get through their parents’ divorce

It’s estimated that one in three children under the age of 16 in the UK experiences their parents’ separation. 

So hearing what helped them can be beneficial.


Charities and women’s rights organisations call on the Prime Minister to deliver the Domestic Abuse Bill

One of the results of the current parliamentary turmoil is a backlog of bills that might not progress to the next session. Concerned campaigners have written to the PM to make sure the hard-fought for Domestic Abuse Bill “remains a priority for your government”.


Generation 'Z' likely to demand prenup - survey

The YouGov survey shows that Generation Z are indeed more pragmatic about marriage and preparing before with a pre-nups appears to be on the rise.

Interested in creating a #prenuptial agreement? We can advise on the process call us on 01189 735521


If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

Take control of your finances BEFORE you divorce


In our second article on financial divorce settlements, Anne Leiper explores how everyone approaching divorce can take control of their finances and prepare for financial disclosure.


How much income do you need? The importance of realistic spousal maintenance

Hand holding £50 notes for spousal maintenance


Should spousal maintenance be a 'meal ticket for life'?

Top judges are indicating that unconditional "support for life" is no longer acceptable. Director Rita Gupta explores this contentious issue, and suggest that realism might be the best tool for success.


From Russia with love (or not): why Russian wives are bringing their divorce cases to the English courts

St Basils Russia divorce cases in England


High worth divorce and the High Court. When there are billions at stake, England is the place to come.


From our social media:

What is the role of friends in separation?

A nice article how your can support friends going through separation.


A third of women couldn’t cope financially if their relationship ended

55 and 64-years-old were most likely to be financially vulnerable in the event of a break up (42 per cent).


Sharon Osbourne discusses being the 'stability' her granddaughters need following divorce of her son, Jack

Grand parent's can play a great part in making divorce easier for children to cope with. As Sharon says:
“Nana and Papa are still in the same house. Nothing’s going to change. You know what you’re going to get when you come here.”


Victims of stalking and domestic abuse could be able to appeal 'lenient' prison sentences

The Ministry of Justice is also contemplating calls for a new legal duty on prosecutors to notify victims about the scheme after some were left oblivious to the fact they were able to challenge a lenient sentence.

Victims only have 28 days after sentencing to ask the Attorney General to review a prison terms.


Half of women have no plan for pension in divorce

More than half (56 per cent) of married women don’t have arrangements in place to protect their pensions in a divorce, research has shown.


Children of divorce: The key role of self-esteem in recovering from the trauma

Interesting findings from this Netherlands study.

The study examined 142 six- to 18-year-old children of divorce who had experienced high conflict between their parents. In addition to self-esteem the researchers looked at three other things that may influence how children cope with trauma: the level of parental conflict


Surrogate from the Midlands says new laws need to bring structure

Becky says being a surrogate is a different journey to having her own children.


Write to the Lord Chancellor on access to justice

A quick way to help get the Lord Chancellor to see how important it is to all.


Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos are officially divorced. Now they're divvying up their Amazon stake

At just 12% Bezos is still the largest shareholder in Amazon at a staggering $110billion!


To understand violent men, talk to the women who know them

The criminal justice system needs to do many things if it is serious about tackling its dismal track record in rape cases. One of the very first is showing some humility and listening to the people who really know what’s going on. Frankly, if you really want to understand male violence, you need to listen to women.


Sarah French: Why advisers should consider Resolution accreditation

A good article on why financial advisers should consider Resolution's accreditation scheme.


Jilted lover storms into ex's wedding and attacks guests before kidnapping the groom and his brother in India

Not really the best way to act.


If you missed what we’ve been sharing last month, here’s a round up of our blogs and some of the news posts on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

From our blog:

Swings and roundabouts: why falling divorce rates are not necessarily good news


Divorce rates are on the decline, but so are marriage rates, as more couple choose cohabitation as their preferred choice. However, cohabitation brings a whole range of issues of its own, requiring new solutions unique to each couple if that relationship breaks down. Discover more in our article.


Only the lonely: why do people stay in unhappy marriages?

man and woman separated on sofa - unhappy marriage


Our article on why staying in an unhappy relationship or marriage could affect your health, and how to deal with the no.1 factor that prevents people leaving, fear.




The Bezos effect: high net worth divorce and financial settlements

High net worth for divorce


When divorcing a fair and reasonable financial settlement that reflects your joint worth should be attainable.

With our considerable expertise and experience we can guide you through the complex maze of financial arrangements to achieve the best result for you and your family.

In the first of two articles, Director Anne Leiper explores the implications of full financial disclosure for high worth couples.


From our social media:

Divorcing couples will be 'nudged' to share pensions under Government plans

Minister for Women and Equalities Penny Mordaunt wants the government to tackle the causes of financial inequality in later life by intervening at points where women are likely to face disadvantage from school to employment, divorce and retirement.


Sexual violence victims get 'terrible deal', says outgoing commissioner

This is a sad state of affairs.
In her final report after six years in office Helen Newlove said there had been a breakdown in trust and that victims were being failed by law enforcement agencies. She called for victims of sexual violence to be provided with independent legal advice.


Divorce: New law could lead to 'spike' - minister

No blame divorce moves closer! MPs approved the bill at its second reading - bringing changes a step closer to becoming reality. In order to become law it will undergo further scrutiny from MPs before being considered by peers in the House of Lords.


Over 35 MPs enrol for work experience with legal aid lawyers

This is part of a new campaign aimed at demonstrating first-hand why comprehensive, early legal advice is so vital.
Hopefully this might make them more aware of the funding situation.


First woman president of Queen's Bench Division sworn in

Another milestone in the journey of women in law.


I started out with a nuclear family, and It morphed into a massive blended family

Good article from the daughter of divorced parents, where she shares all the positives in her life.

Judge tells divorcing couple to form truce after spending £1,000,000 on lawyers

We are only arguing about somewhere between £1 million and £2 million between people who are worth somewhere between £25 million and £30 million. It is pretty depressing frankly." Well said judge!


How to help a child through divorce

Some simple tips that might often be overlooked and can really help.


How a collaborative approach to divorce in Scotland is helping to minimise conflict

Scotland seeing a rise in Collaborative Divorce.


The first 'social media divorce': How Jeff Bezos carefully stage-managed his $38bn split with MacKenzie

Interesting how social media has become the norm even for divorce announcements.


Judges are having to deal directly with rowing couples, complains family court president

It was widely acknowledged that legal aid reforms ‘were not entirely successful' in delivering the desired changes in behaviour of those who seek the resolution of a dispute in private family law.


Divorced UK couples could be left in limbo in Republic of Ireland

The Brexit effect people may not realise.


15 divorce lawyers share unusual reasons couples have filed for divorce. Bad breath?!

Perhaps not the best reason to divorce.


Family courts 'running up a down escalator' due to increase in cases

Is this really the answer?


Financial pressures force closure of London law centre

Very sad that lack of funding has caused more legal aid offices to close.


Brits are now taking ‘divorce holidays’

How some divorcees are choosing to 'recover'.


Pensions: how to divide the spoils when getting a divorce

Penny Mordaunt the minister for women and equalities said she had grown increasingly worried about the failure of the divorce courts to ensure women are getting a fair share of couples’ retirement savings; just 36% of divorce settlements include provisions for sharing pension assets.


Having more sleep before holiday 'stops arguments'

It's that time of year, one way to keep holiday arguments at bay!

major pressure point is that by the time we pull on our holiday clothes and sunglasses we're already burned out.


And Finally

Anne's third video in our series: LGFL Ltd understand the importance of privacy to us all.

Ryan Giggs may have retired from football two years ago, but the former player has probably had more off-pitch attention than he wanted ever since. LGFL Director Rita Gupta tackles the complex issues behind he media reports on this unusual divorce case.


Read More

words Family Affair in bulls eye

Being the sibling or child of a famous politician cannot be easy. The attention your famous relative receives also places you under exceptional scrutiny, as the Hunter Biden divorce case shows. Director Rita Gupta explains more.

Hunter Biden is the son of Joe Biden, the former Vice President of the USA who served alongside Barack Obama from 2009-2017. When Hunter and his wife Kathleen filed for divorce back in December 2016, his father was already making way for a new Vice President. Biden Senior was, if you like, old news. So was the divorce, as his son and daughter in law had already been estranged for a year.
Yet, when the case came to court and the couple agreed to a settlement, the judge refused their request to have the settlement sealed “to avoid embarrassment”, as most of the more lurid details had already been put into the public domain.

Public knowledge and private details

In the USA, a filing for divorce becomes public once it is submitted. In the Biden divorce case brought by Kathleen, she claimed that her husband “had created financial concerns for the family by spending extravagantly on his own interest (including drugs, alcohol, prostitutes, strip clubs and gifts for women with whom he had sexual relations), while leaving the family with no funds to pay legitimate bills.”

She also claimed that Hunter Biden held a diamond worth $80,000, a claim that he first denied and then admitted to have handed back to the "entity that gave it to him.”

This is this kind of detail that the media laps up, as illustrated by the fact that it took me just a few moments online to discover them and see scans of the actual divorce papers in a UK national newspaper article.


The child in the middle

Needless to say, as is so often the case, there is a child stuck in the middle of this case. The couple have three daughters, aged 23, 18 and 16. It is the youngest girl, Maisie, who remained in the family home with her mother, and for whom Kathleen is seeking sole custody. Her father Hunter is disputing this, looking for joint custody.

At LGFL, we always put the interest of your children first in divorce cases. We ensure that any settlement protects their futures as well as your own, and work tirelessly to minimise the financial and logistical impact of parents living apart. If you are concerned about the impact of divorce on your family, come and talk to us first. Our quiet and relaxing offices in the Berkshire countryside ensure your meeting is discreet and confidential. Call us on 01189 735521.


Embarrassment is not enough

For the Biden household, the sealing of their settlement details seems to be an issue of limiting embarrassment. However, as Family Court Judge Craig Iscoe said;

“Embarrassment… is not a basis for sealing the record of a public case, even where a party arguably faces more embarrassment than do the parties here.”

There is arguably more embarrassment to come, which no court can rule over. Hunter’s brother Beau Biden died in May 2015, and his marriage broke up shortly afterwards. Now Hunter is dating his late brother’s widow, Hallie, apparently with the blessing of father Joe. So, expect to see and hear more on this Dynasty-style family saga…
At LGFL Ltd, we’re proud members of Resolution, a group of family law professionals who work with families and individuals to resolve issues in a constructive way.

This week, Resolution is promoting Good Divorce Week, to highlight how we and other family lawyers adhere to a Code designed to help us help families better.


Read More

It’s a question we get asked frequently here at LGFL. Partner Anne Leiper explains the fixed costs and how the final costs depends on the approach you take.

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A judge recently told Liam Gallagher that the legal bill for his divorce from Nicola Appleton was “manifestly excessive” at £800,000.

By the time the divorce between former Oasis frontman Liam Gallagher and former All Saints singer Nicole Appleton was finally settled, the couple had spent an eye-watering £800,00 on legal costs. With assets being split equally between, the couple would each receive around £5.5 million each.

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