Representing yourself in the family Court

Emsleys Head of Family Law, Gabbie Clasper, tells of the recent well-documented case of Bakir v Downe2014) which highlights the risks of representing yourself in the family Court without a solicitor or barrister.

The case involved a husband who chose to represent himself in Court. Although he could afford some legal advice he decided to spend his money on other things. This resulted in him being financially responsible for his wife legal costs after they had to attend additional hearings because he did not follow the correct legal procedures.

The Judge explained that it is not the role of the Court to offer legal advice and guidance. If you wish to take an application to the Court, you must do so in accordance with the procedure laid down by the law. There may be financial implications if you do not follow the correct legal procedures.

It is therefore vitally important to understand what you need to do and when. We advise that you seek initial advice from a solicitor, even if you ultimately decide to represent yourself. If your circumstances are complicated and involve money and/or children we strongly recommend that you instruct a solicitor to help you with these legal processes and advise you of the possible outcomes.

Emsleys launched an online service to offer support to those separating, divorcing or wishing to dissolve a civil partnership.

You can read the full article at Understanding Divorce here.

Gabbie  Clasper

Written by

Gabbie Clasper

Head of Family Law

Gabbie has over 20 years’ experience in family law. She has expert knowledge in complex issues including financial aspects following divorce; pre and post-nuptial agreements; cases with an international element; and civil partnerships. Gabbie is regularly instructed by clients based across the country and abroad. She...

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