A new year brings a lot of New Years Resolutions. Traditionally gym memberships rise, dieting clubs see a vast increase in their numbers and solicitors see an increased number of family enquiries.

For the legal profession, the first working day in January is commonly known as “Divorce Day”, owing to the amount of new divorce enquiries.

It is sad that the New Year starts with a lot of couples wanting to separate. The stress of Christmas, coupled with a lack of access to information over the Christmas period as many offices close between Christmas and New Year can lead to an increased number of applications.

Unfortunately, it’s a trend that is on the increase with the office of National Statistics reporting that last year there was a 5.8% increase in the number of divorces compared to the previous year. This was the first increase since 2010.   The statistics only look at the number of divorces that have been completed, so it is really only the tip of the iceberg. Many more couples simply separate and seek advice.

By obtaining advice, this enables individuals to know what their rights are and how the process works should they then choose to go on to divorce. This is something that we are able to support clients with.   There is a misconception that once an individual goes to a solicitor that the divorce process must start. This does not need to be the case. We are happy to support our clients with the advice. Sometimes this can lead to a Divorce, sometimes not. However, we also are able to assist clients in accessing services such as marriage guidance counselling or mediation. So consulting a solicitor doesn’t have to be the last resort, being better informed means making better choices.