What is the Cost of Divorce Petition?

Here at Higgins Miller, we specialise in all areas of family law. This means that we’re used to dealing with highly emotional cases based on issues such as adoption, children disputes and domestic violence. We realise that it would be all too easy to concentrate solely on the technical and legal ramifications of a case while forgetting the emotional impact it can have. We make a point of offering emotional as well as practical support, however, based on an understanding that cases of this kind are often amongst the most stressful life-experiences an individual can face.

This is particularly the case when a client is going through a divorce, and one of the most stressful aspects of the situation is the question of the cost of divorce petition. The details of any financial settlement agreed will vary with individual cases, and can include aspects such as property, pensions, savings and any money to be paid for the future care of children. What adds to the stress over the cost of any divorce is the notion that the ‘meter is running’ from the first time a client makes contact with a solicitor. That’s not the way we work of Higgins Miller, however. Not only do we always try to minimise the risk of court action when dealing with a divorce, and settle matters by means of a joint mediated agreement, we also deal with issues of cost in a completely transparent manner, ensuring that each client remains aware of the cost of divorce petition through every part of the process.

We make things simpler by operating a fixed costs system. This means that the cost of divorce petition, alongside other aspects of the process, is set out from the beginning, removing at least one of the causes of stress. The fixed fee system means that a client can instruct us to act for them in the knowledge of exactly how much the work we’re going to do will cost, including VAT. In the case of a divorce the case may become more complex if it is defended by the other party, and the new circumstances may lead to additional fixed fees being applied, on top of the court fees charged for starting divorce proceedings, which are currently set at £550.     

The service we offer usually begins with an initial 20 minute appraisal, face to face or over the phone, which is provided free of charge. This allows us to ascertain whether your case is one in which we can help and whether you might be eligible for legal aid. A first advice meeting lasting up to an hour will cost £60, but these are part of the general service we offer to all clients. The fixed fee cost of divorce petition is charged as follows:

It covers divorces and dissolution of civil partnerships in cases where the action is undefended. This means that both parties agree to the divorce taking place. We will engage in an initial 45-minute appraisal, during which we’ll establish exactly how the client wishes to proceed. After this the fixed fee will cover aspects such as preparing the divorce petition, preparing the statement outlining arrangements for children and pulling together any supporting documents. All documents will then be sent to the client and to the other party and any changes needed after this will be made and the petition will be lodged with the court.  

The next stages of the process will involve lodging a Special Procedure Application with the court and inform the client of the date of the Decree Nisi before applying on their behalf for the Decree Absolute.

The fixed fee which we charge for this process is currently £300 plus VAT, and if there are any extras to be charged – if a divorce petition has to personally served, for example – we’ll make sure you remain fully informed of what they are.

If you’re still not certain about the cost of divorce petition, if the divorce you seek will be contested or not and whether there are any other complicating factors, please contact us by calling 0161 429 7251, or emailing to [email protected]. We’ll work by your side to ensure that the difficult process of divorce remains as stress-free and affordable as it possibly can.

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