The End of the Road?

January 24, 2017, By

Today’s Supreme Court decision offers a neat analogy with the end of divorce and financial proceedings in family law: what do you do when it’s over and the judge has made his or her decision?

Although Mrs May’s government has now exhausted its appeals options, in certain circumstances it is possible to appeal the final decision made by the Family Court judge who hears a divorce and finances case.

However, judges in family cases have an extremely wide discretion when determining the appropriate level of financial settlement and dividing all the available assets, so even if the original decision is not necessarily one that the appeal judge would have made, this fact alone will not automatically mean that the appeal is allowed.

As many experienced family lawyers will tell you, it is always helpful to conduct a cost/benefit analysis in pursuing your case to a final hearing in the Family Court (and beyond that to an appeal) as against reaching an informed agreement to settle outside the court arena. This is especially critical in cases where assets and income are more modest; appeals can be costly and will often involve additional expenditure on a barrister’s fees for providing an expert opinion and representing you at the appeal hearing.

In any event it is always beneficial to seek expert legal advice at the start of divorce proceedings; to be forewarned is to be forearmed, and good advice early on will enable you to make an informed decision more quickly.

Fortunately, unlike the fiercely litigated Brexit saga, there are also alternatives to resolving divorce and finances matters outside the court arena. These alternative methods, such as collaborative family law and mediation, can be much more cost effective and also serve to prevent exacerbating what is an already difficult time for the family involved.


At Slater Heelis we are focused entirely on achieving the best outcome for you—and our experience and level of commitment is second-to-none. Several of our family solicitors are ranked as leading individuals and recommended lawyers in the authoritative UK legal directories (Legal 500 and Chambers) and all of our family solicitors adhere to the Resolution Code of Practice, which means that they will work with you to resolve your case in a constructive and non-confrontational way.

To get in touch, just call 0161 969 3131 or email a member of the team.