Good Divorce Week
Monday 28th to Monday 5th December – To raise awareness of a new code of practice.
This new Code of Practice has been created to promote a constructive approach to family issues, in particular for divorce.
As a member of Resolution we are committed to follow this code in all our family matters.
Read more about why you should choose a Resolution member for your divorce here
Code of Practice
We are a resolution member which means we follow this Code of Practice
Resolution members follow a Code of Practice that promotes a constructive approach to family issues and considers the needs of the whole family, in particular the best interests of children. This means:
• Listening to you, being honest with you and treating you with respect.
• Explaining all the options and giving you confidence to make the right decisions.
• Helping you focus on what’s important in the long-term.
• Helping you balance financial and emotional costs with what you want to achieve.
• Working with others to find the right approach and the best solutions for you.
• Managing stress in what can be an already stressful situation.
Resolution's Code of Practice
Resolution is a community of family justice professionals who work with families and individuals to resolve issues in a constructive way. Resolution membership is about the approach we take to our work. This means that as a Resolution member, We will:
• Reduce or manage any conflict and confrontation; for example, by not using inflammatory language.
• Support and encourage families to put the best interests of any children first.
• Act with honesty, integrity and objectivity.
• Help clients understand and manage the potential long-term financial and emotional consequences of decisions.
• Listen to and treat everyone with respect and without judgment.
• Use my experience and knowledge to guide clients through the options available to them.
• Continually develop my knowledge and skills.
• Use the Resolution Guides to Good Practice in my day-to-day work.
And we will work with other Resolution members to uphold this Code and ensure it is at the heart of everything we do.
Meet 828 Law at Blackpool Expo in September
828 Law is delighted to announce they will be exhibiting at Blackpool Expo – uniting with other Lancashire business in support of the local economy.
The free expo on Wednesday, September 21, offers the opportunity to meet a representative from 828 Law who will be on hand to offer legal advice, share their secrets to business success and to talk to visitors about their services.
Angela Singleton, from 828 Law, said: “We are really excited to be a part of Blackpool Expo. We are passionate about supporting the local economy and Blackpool Expo is a great way to highlight the successful organisations that are on our doorstep.”
The event will be offering speed networking sessions, free seminars throughout the day that will be giving advice on areas such as social media, online lead generation, multi-channel marketing, and numerous exhibitors, including 828 Law.
Event organiser, Nichola Howard, of Launch Events North West, said: “I am delighted that 828 Law will be joining us at Blackpool Expo.
“Good business is all about making connections, meeting new people, looking out for new opportunities and telling the world about what you are about - and that is what Blackpool Expo does for businesses in Lancashire.”
This year, Blackpool Expo, which is celebrating its second anniversary, will be held at Village Urban Resort, Blackpool, from 9.30-3.00pm.
If you would like to exhibit or attend as a visitor, tickets are available at www.blackpoolexpo.co.uk.
For more information on 828 Law, visit: www.828law.co.uk
Law firm raises £1900.00 for charity
Raising £1900.00 for charity is no easy task. Local solicitors firm 828 Law inspired a number of people to partake in the longest and fastest zipline in Europe. Located in north Wales, the Zip World adventure is not one for the faint hearted. Being over a mile long and with speeds of over 100mph, this was a very daunting task.
The team set off on 18th June 2016 for a fun filled adventure weekend. Principal solicitor Angela organised the fundraiser, with the team raising just under £1900.00 for charity. The team, led by Angela, and consisted of Jill Middleton, Abi Goldbourn, Steve Kirkby, Kelli Green, Fiona Podmore, Charlot Podmore-Nappin, Pete Podmore-Nappin and Phil Gornall. The total raised was a credit to each and every person who dared to take on the challenge.
Funds were raised for Cancer Research UK, and Voices in the Middle. The latter helps children whose families have broken down. 828 Law rounded it up to £1900.00.
Angela would like to thank all the people who made the event possible including all those who took part, those who helped to organise it, and the fantastic staff at Zipworld who made the day so much fun.
The 828 approach
8 2 8 Law joins with Longridge Town Council to Sponsor local production of MOCKINGBIRD HIGH
A locally written, highly acclaimed play staring talented local professional actors has been brought to Longridge Civic Hall for one night on 20th September. The story of Mockingbird High highlights the issue of domestic abuse and tackles conversations that are difficult to talk about. It is the story of two teenagers and their mother has been described as breath taking drama.
Angela Singleton (8 2 8 Law in Longridge) is responsible for sponsoring the event and says “I wanted to draw attention to this sensitive issue and support the local theatre group which tours nationally but has not had the opportunity to perform in its local area. I deal with domestic abuse cases as part of the work I do so it’s natural for me to want to help raise awareness, and as I am passionate about the community I’m excited that it’s in being produced in my home town of Longridge.”
The show supports a discussion time after the show with cast and writers to discuss the issues raised.
NB: contains strong language - not suitable for children under 15.
Information and support will be provided by HARV outreach team.
School Holidays what age can I leave my kids home alone?
So the kids break up from school and you juggle the childcare and try and entertain them for the 6 week’s holidays, its daunting – turning to all your usual methods of creativity, kid’s clubs, days out with grandparents and maybe leave them at home alone for a few hours. BUT when and what age is it OK to do this?
There are no firm laws as to when it is appropriate to leave your children at home, or elsewhere, alone during the summer holidays. This depends on their age and their maturity and how well the child would cope in a crisis?
It is never OK to leave a baby or toddler alone not even for a few moments to nip out, even if they are fast asleep.
Leaving children in with older siblings can create other difficulties if they are prone to falling out.
Making sure they do not go out and get into trouble or into danger is another concern, ensuring they are adequately protected in the sun (well we can hope we have some sun) and know about stranger danger, if you live in a farming area or the country they need to be aware of agricultural hazards or the dangers of water. Going out alone is exactly the same there are no fast rules know if your child is ready to do that, download useful information here. Once again it really depends on the child.
Children should be taught how to respond in an emergency what to do, and should have access to a telephone, numbers for emergencies and the ability to communicate with perhaps a neighbour they can trust if they are unsure.
Every year there is an increase over the summer holidays of calls made to the NSPCC in respect of this issue. Calls peak in July to September from children and also from people concerned about children being eft alone. Approximately ¾’s of the calls made in 2014 were serious enough to require police/social services attendance.
What does the Law say?
The only law in England and Wales states that children must not be neglected or abandoned “in a manner likely to cause (them) unnecessary suffering or injury to health”. Clearly this does not give an age, and trusts in the parental judgement. So it’s all down to you and how well you know your child.
In summery, an acceptable age for a child to be left on their own is approximately 12. Children are often not mature enough to cope before this age. When considering whether a child should be left alone overnight, the age should be increased to around 16.
It is important to note that parents and carers can be prosecuted if police or social services deem that the children are at risk, or being neglected. It’s not worth risking if you know your child is not ready to be left and may be worth a look locally at some of the events and groups they could join.
The good news is we are already two weeks in to the summer holidays and they will soon be back to the normal routine.
To take a short quiz to help you assess your child
Further advice is available here
An application to the family court
Where all other methods have failed, or there is an element of domestic violence, court proceedings may be the only option.
An application can be made to the Court by a solicitor. At 828 Law we have many years experience in all types of family proceedings including applications for child arrangement orders, financial proceedings and injunctions.
The Courts set a timetable for the evidence to be filed at court, and for the case to be heard by a Judge. The time scales for the court process vary depending on the type of case, and the issues raised.
Court cases can be costly. 828 Law provides fixed fees for each stage of the court process so that clients know at the beginning how much it will cost.
We offer a free half an hour of advice for all new clients when we will be able to discuss your potential case, advise you and inform you of the likely costs. Once armed with all the vital information, you will be able to decide how you wish to move forwards with your case.
Alternatives to court
Before entering into a potentially lengthy and difficult court process there are a couple of other options available for clients.
Mediation is a process where the parties meet with a trained mediator to see if it is possible to reach an agreement between themselves. This is a very cost effective way of resolving difficulties. Prior to any application to court, it is a requirement that a referral is made to mediation in order to help clients to focus on the outcome they seek.
Another option is a four way meeting known as collaborative law. A specially trained lawyer would advise clients and commit to helping clients to resolve their differences. Both parties would attend the meetings with their collaborative lawyer with the intention of negotiating to find a common ground in which to reach an agreement.
In summary, there are alternative ways to assist clients before an application to court becomes necessary. Court proceedings can be costly, and damaging to future relations between the parties.
Families break down, and couples separate, but the children’s feelings are often forgotten. The way in which parents deal with a family breakdown can have a huge impact on their children for the rest of their lives.
Where possible, children should be informed by both parents together about the separation. This should be dealt with in an age appropriate manner. The children must be reassured that both parents still love them, and that they will still see both parents. Children should be made aware that it is not their fault. It is always helpful for the children to be free to ask any questions. You do not want them to feel they cannot talk to you.
It is essential that children are protected from any disagreements and do not witness violence or arguments. Children need to feel safe and protected, but separation can cause them to feel anxious and potentially blame themselves.
It is always worth discussing your separation with your children’s school, to assist teachers so they can keep an eye on your children.
Principal solicitor at 828 Law, Angela Singleton, is a founding partner of a charity called Voices in the Middle which aims to help and support children whose families have broken down. Involved in fund raising, marketing, and the development of this charity, 828 Law goes the extra mile to help families and their children to ensure that separation is as pain free as possible for all concerned.
Are you ready to separate?
There are many issues which can cause a relationship to breakdown. Often these are external causes which one or more party are struggling to deal with.
External resources can sometimes really assist clients to cope with a range of difficulties such as depression, bereavement, anger, stress parental issues, marital issues, or even a troubled childhood. Counselling or family therapy can provide an outlet for issues which appear to be coming between a couple. Resolution members encourage clients to seek advice from a counsellor if they believe it would be beneficial.
Clients sometimes seek advice when the relationship comes into difficulty but prior to separation, wanting to know their legal position is if the worst should occur. At 828 Law, we provide clients with details of local services which can assist where a reconciliation is possible.
Who are Resolution?
Resolution is an organisation of family solicitors in England and Wales. Members practise to the highest standards and have received specialist training. Resolution believes that cases resulting from a family breakdown should be dealt with in a non-confrontational way and encouraging clients to keep financial issues and child arrangements separate.
Family breakdown is always very difficult for those involved. Resolution members seek to assist clients in many ways before Court proceedings are instigated. Initially, options such as counselling and family therapy are discussed with the client to see whether it is possible to resolve the problems within the family unit. Unfortunately, this is not always successful.
Clients are encouraged to focus on the children and to keep their best interests at the forefront when making any decisions. There are services which can assist children to come to terms with the breakdown, and it is important that they are not forgotten.
Negotiations with a solicitor may assist a family to reach an agreement that is beneficial to all parties, including the children of the family. Mediation is also beneficial to help families to reach an agreement. There are also other methods of negotiating such as round table meetings and collaborative law, before clients consider taking the matter to Court.
All Resolution members conform to the Code of Practice which can be found at resolution.org.uk/code
Angela Singleton Discusses Voices in the Middle on BBC News
828 Law founding member and Family Law specialist Angela Singleton was recently invited to the BBC Studio to discuss her involvement in the newly launched charity Voices in the Middle. Drawing attention to the fact that almost half of children in the UK live in separated families by the age of fifteen, this publicity is a huge boon for the fledgling charity, which aims to provide support for the children of parents who are undergoing or who have undergone divorce procedures.
With so many families experiencing separation and divorce, Voices in the Middle is a charity originally set up by a group of family law and mediation specialists, who want to support the people who they felt need it most: children caught between their separating parents. With the backing of their law firms, as well as specialist divorce help sites and, most of all, the young people who provide support as well as receive it, this charity provides a helpline for children who have nowhere else to turn, and a support group that consists of both peers and mentors.
To find out more about Voices in the Middle visit their website voicesinthemiddle.org.uk and consider getting involved in whichever way you can, whether it is as simple as making a donation, becoming a peer mentor or even telling your own story to help others get through the tough times you made it through yourself.
Hopefully this is just the first in a long line of publicity opportunities that will help open up the plight of young people to everyone, and see them get the help and support they need.
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