Divorce and separation can be a time of huge conflict and heartache for couples. It is widely accepted that the current divorce law in England & Wales has further exacerbated the position, leaving divorcing couples with no option to end the marriage amicably immediately upon separation. As it stands, unless blame is apportioned, they must wait until they are separated for two plus years. This can be very distressing for separating couples and can result in increased acrimony or considerable delays, neither of which are particularly helpful in already very difficult circumstances. The impact of starting proceedings on an acrimonious note on the families going forward is immeasurable.
Wills are simple aren’t they? For most of my career, I had been told that wills are so straightforward that anyone can draft them. Unfortunately, this public misconception encourages people to attempt to draft their own wills or buy low-cost “will packs” online or from a stationer. Continue reading “Simple wills won’t protect your legacy”
The fastest rising living arrangement in England and Wales is the cohabiting couple family; this has more than doubled from 1.5 million families in 1996 to 3.3 million families in 2017*. Cohabitation has its advantages but it certainly doesn’t provide legal protection. Due to a lack of public awareness, there is, the perhaps, mistaken belief, that a “common law” spouse has the same entitlement as a married spouse or civil partner. Continue reading “No legal protection for cohabiting couples”
In an attempt by TV producers to create realistic televisual experiences, we often find soap opera storylines can be very close to the mark and that life can easily imitate art. In a recent Coronation Street storyline a main character made the decision to end his life. By not writing a will before his death, his estate did not automatically transfer to his family. If this was to happen in real life it would cause additional distress at a time of difficulty with a potentially costly outcome. Continue reading “Don’t let life imitate a soap opera”