Resolution Manifesto – Re-thinking divorce for the next UK’s Government
Resolution is a group of family lawyers and other family law professionals, formed with the aim of handling divorce and separation in a way that minimises the conflict and stress caused to couples and the impact on children. The Resolution Manifesto aims to change the way that divorce and separation is dealt with and create a more amicable and constructive approach with the needs of the child at the centre. It puts forward six proposals:
Protect vulnerable people going through separation – By creating a form of “family law credit”, where anyone who meets the criteria for legal aid for family mediation is able to have an initial meeting with a family lawyer to help them gather the evidence they need in order to access legal aid, or to discuss their options.
Introduce procedures to help keep divorce out of court – Mediation, collaborative law, arbitration and round the table meetings as an alternative median to Court proceedings. As each individual case is so different, the approach should be tailored to the needs of the individual. It also recommends that MIAMs are renamed ’Advice and Information Meetings’ (AIMs), to make clear that they are not solely focused on mediation.
Introducing of a ‘Parenting Charter’- Whilst most parents have their children’s best interests at heart, may do not understand what their responsibilities are as a parent going through the separation process and so the Resolution proposes a clear parenting charter, which would set out what children should expect from their parents if they are separating, and what separating parents need to do in the interests of their children will help to reduce the likelihood of parents going to court.
Allowing individuals to divorce without blame – Currently divorce procedures encourage a ‘blame game’ due to the need to cite fault – such as unreasonable behaviour or adultery – as a reason for divorce which, in turn, can serve to undermine a child focused, conflict free divorce. The idea is that by introducing a ‘no fault divorce’ both parties will be able to enter into the divorce process on equal footing which results in a more amicable outcome.
Helping people understand how their divorce will affect their future finances – The provision of clear guidance for separating couples so that they are more aware of the potential outcomes and consequences of separation and for wide-ranging reform of the financial provision system to achieve more clarity.
Provide at least basic legal rights for couples who live together if they separate – Currently cohabitees have little or no legal protection if they separate despite representing the fastest growing type of family unit in the UK.
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“Thank you so much for sorting out my divorce and transfer of deeds; everything ran incredibly smoothly. It has been an emotionally stressful time, but you’ve been very professional and this has really helped me.” – Miss R.