Seven tips for a happier divorce

Although the process of divorce and separation is never going to be a pleasant thing to go through, couples often don’t make it any easier on themselves. There are things you can do which could make your separation or divorce a much smoother and less emotionally exhausting process. Rachel Macwilliam, specialist in family law, runs through her top tips for a happier divorce…

Tip #1: Try to let go of the past
In order to move forward you need to let go of what has gone before. A vindictive process of focusing on fault and who has behaved most badly is not helpful and will just make you feel worse and make the process longer and more costly.

Tip #2: Consider alternatives to court
Many couples wanting to separate or get a divorce don’t realise that there are other options besides going to court such as mediation. This can often prove to be a faster and less expensive option. A solicitor can guide you through this process.

Tip #3: Be truthful about finances
Like it or not, finances play a crucial part in separation and divorce. It is vital that you are both honest about your finances including any debts and assets as well as accurate estimates of your future expenditure. If you are not truthful about these, it could mean that any settlement you do reach might be overturned by the court later when the truth comes out, or worse, criminal proceedings might be brought against you.

Tip #4: Keep it calm or find a counsellor
There’s no getting away from it, divorce is bound to be emotional and it would be strange if you didn’t find it so. However, to be able to reach an agreement without acrimony, it is best to try to keep things as constructive as possible. If this is proving very hard, it could be a good idea to speak to a counsellor, rather than to inadvertently use your solicitor as one! This will help you to move forward with a clearer mind to be able to make good decisions.

Tip #5: Consider your children
Separation and divorce is hard enough but, add children into the mix, and you reach a whole new level of emotion. The process is also far more complex. You naturally will want the best for your children but it is easy to get fixated on the past and not consider their future. Again, counselling can help with this.

Tip #6: Inform the tax man
It is likely that a separation or divorce will have tax implications. Couples sometimes find this adding further to their problems. Using an experienced divorce solicitor will avoid this happening.

Tip #7: Compromise
Ultimately, divorce and separation will always involve a degree of compromise. Stubbornly refusing to budge will just result in a more protracted and expensive process. It is also likely to become acrimonious.

Finding your way through the process of divorce or separation can be challenging at the best of times, but with some professional advice, it shouldn’t be a catastrophe. Hopefully, the tips above should help you and your partner to move forward and enable you to create a positive future.

If you would like to speak with Rachel Macwilliam, our family law specialist, you can reach her on 01872 241408 or email