Funding your legal representation in separation and divorce

Although we live in an age of greater gender equality than ever before, it remains the case that when couples separate and divorce, wives are often left in a more financially vulnerable position. This arises when the couple have children and the wife has adopted the traditional role of caring for the family. The wife may therefore feel greatly disadvantaged when it comes to affording legal representation, should the marriage come to an end.

The cost of legal representation for separating or divorcing couples does not have to be expensive and is a vital investment in ensuring a fair share of assets -  but many wives (and of course plenty of husbands) may be unable to afford even modest legal fees. 

If one party is represented and the other not, the latter can face a significant disadvantage, not only in terms of the likely outcome, but in the daunting task of having to deal with sometimes complex negotiations and analysis without any proper legal support.

What financial options are available to me during Divorce?

There are a number of options available for people who do not have income or savings available from which to pay a lawyer.

1 Credit Cards or Personal Loans

A new credit card account will often have a zero interest period. Most firms of solicitors will accept card payments. If further funds are required over a longer period of time, it might be more economical to take out a personal loan.

2 Litigation Loan

There are a number of reputable financial institutions who will lend money to help people fund their case. Very often these lenders will make a quick decision and the solicitors can then draw down on the funds, as and when the client approves an invoice. These loans are flexible and transparent. As this is a commercial arrangement, the loan will of course carry interest, paid at the end of the case when the loan is repaid.

3 Bank of Mum and Dad

In a great number of cases people will turn to their parents, or other family members, for financial support. If a client is lucky enough to have such financial support, the benefit over a commercial loan is often the absence of any interest on funds loaned. 

If taking a family loan it is always wise to have this recorded in a signed agreement, ideally at the outset, between the client and the family member providing the financial support.

4 Legal Services Order

If the financial circumstances of the parties are very different, it may be possible for the spouse without funds to apply to the court for an order that will require their spouse to make a payment in respect of their legal fees. 

5 ‘Sears Tooth’ Agreement

This approach involves the client entering into a binding agreement with the solicitor so that they will be paid from the assets recovered by the client. Due to the risk involved the hourly rate for your solicitor will incur a small supplement.

Get In Touch

At Goughs we are happy to discuss which option is best for you, depending on your particular circumstances. Always bear in mind that the cost will be much smaller than your potential loss should you not have adequate legal representation. 

Book your free initial consultation today, call us on 01249 712193 or complete our online enquiry form.