Legal issues concerning family can often be the most stressful situation you may find yourself in. You may be uncertain about your legal rights and worried about the idea of having to go to court to sort things out. Fortunately, with the right legal advice, even the most complex family law matters can usually be sorted out quickly and amicably.
Our family law team are compassionate and understanding, and we will listen and advise you at the pace you feel comfortable with. All our advice is given in plain English, so you get a clear picture of your rights and your options for moving forwards.
We will always work with the aim of managing your case without conflict with the third party concerned where possible. In many cases, mediation can be an excellent way of avoiding court proceedings where appropriate; however this, of course, will be assessed on its suitability on a case by case basis.
Family law can cover a multitude of needs, from adoption, divorce, any parenting conflicts, protection of yourself and/or dependents from harm or abuse, and our team have a wealth of knowledge ready and waiting to assist you should the need arise.
Book a fixed cost initial consultation with our family lawyers in Tenterden
We can also offer meetings by Skype for clients who have to travel extensively or who now live abroad. In exceptional circumstances, home visits can also be arranged.
Top tips for putting children first during divorce and separation
How we can help you with family law advice
Our team of experienced family lawyers can help with:
- wealth protection and prenuptial agreements for unmarried couples or soon to be husbands, wives and civil partners;
- filing and responding to divorce proceedings or civil partnership dissolutions including all financial elements that need to be considered
- any situations where children are involved including custody, visitation rights and logistics of moving them abroad
- parenting issues where a parental responsibility order from the court may be needed to ensure both parents have an equal say about decisions affecting their children’s lives, or where there are issues around fertility and surrogacy;
- family care proceedings where a local authority has indicated an intention to remove your child or to insert them in to the adoption system
- protecting your family where you have been victims of domestic violence and/or abuse
Removing conflict from family law
Conflict is something most people want to avoid at the best of times. When it comes to your family, letting things get heated can cause long-term problems, especially if you have children who can be deeply affected by such things.
At Pengelly & Rylands, our aim is to strip all the unnecessary conflict out of family law, making the process as smooth and stress-free as possible, while also saving you time and money. By using non-confrontational dispute resolution instead of court proceedings wherever possible, we can make dealing with family law matters much easier on you and your loved ones.
We offer two main options for sorting out family law matters out of court:
Mediation – Where a trained neutral mediator meets with you and your partner over a series of sessions to discuss the issues you disagree over and guide you towards agreeing solutions. This is usually the fastest, least costly options for most family law disputes.
Collaborative law – Where you, your partner and your respective lawyers meet for a series of four-way ‘round the table’ discussions. This gives you the change to discuss any points of dispute and have on hand legal advice to unpick any complex issues and help you reach an agreement. Collaborative law is generally more expensive than mediation, but much less costly than court proceedings and is ideal for resolving more complicated matters.
Of course, not all family law disputes can be resolved amicably and in some cases mediation and collaborative law may not be appropriate (e.g. in cases of domestic abuse). Where court proceedings are needed, we have the experience to give you the very best representation every step of the way, so you can get the right outcome for you and your family.
Why choose Pengelly & Rylands for family law?
Choosing the right lawyer to help you and your family is a daunting task. You need someone you can trust to:
- Listen to your problems
- Provide practical advice that is simple to understand
- Help you make informed decisions about what to do
- Keep you in the loop at all times
- Help reduce stress
Our family law solicitors understand exactly what you are going through and are on hand to provide advice, guidance and emotional support from the moment you need us.
Our specialist team is led by Avril Croud, a dedicated family lawyer with over 30 years’ experience helping families find their way through challenging issues.
We are accredited by the Law Society with the Family Law Accreditation. Avril was one of the first solicitors to be admitted to the Family Panel and is also an accredited Family Law Advanced specialist.
Our team also includes:
- Deborah Nicholson, an accredited member of the Family Panel and qualified collaborative lawyer.
- Laura Hails, a qualified collaborative lawyer.
Avril, Deborah and Laura are all members of Resolution, a family law network dedicated to helping families find constructive out-of-court settlements to a wide range of problems. We adhere to the Resolution Code of Conduct to help our clients, so you can expect us to:
- Listen, be honest and treat you with respect.
- Set out all your options so you can make confident decisions about what to do.
- Help you focus on the long-term important things.
- Help you weigh up the costs of achieving the outcome you want, including financial and emotional costs.
- Manage stress.
Our Family Law team has also received the Law Society Children Law Accreditation for our skills representing children in family law proceedings.
Our family law fees
Fixed cost initial appointment - We offer an initial appointment to discuss your requirements at a fixed cost of £100 plus VAT.
Fixed fee family law - Some services, such as preparing and submitting divorce petitions, can be offered on a fixed fee basis in certain cases.
Flexible payment - We can arrange flexible payment terms, including monthly billing to help you budget.
Legal aid family law advice - Legal aid may also be available in certain cases and is normally always available for defending care proceedings and taking steps to protect against domestic violence or child abuse.