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Love, Life and the Law

Parental Alienation

Louise Barretto
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I have written on this topic before but without much conviction that things would ever really change for the better. However, after reading the judgment of Her Honour Judge Gordon-Saker in the case of B (change of residence; parental alienation) [2017] EWFC...

How Much is Too Much When it Comes to Legal Costs on a Divorce?

Louise Barretto
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All members of my team have at one stage or another, been instructed by a client who has little concern for how much the sorting out of the financial matters on divorce costs, but instead are fixated on achieving an outcome that they believe to be fair, at...

Going Against

Louise Barretto
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Yesterday the highest court in the land confirmed the principle that a person can leave their estate to whomsoever they want to, in their will. This is the “freedom of testation” principle. The case involved the estate of the late Mrs Jackson...

Brangelina Divorce: What Next for the Children?

Louise Barretto
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When I heard the news that the famous Brad Pitt and glamorous Angelina Jolie are getting divorced, all I could think about was that 6 innocent children could be about to become embroiled in a horrible family split being played out in the media all over the...

How does Surrogacy work in practice?

Louise Barretto
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Forming families with the help of a surrogate is becoming more and more popular despite the fact that in this country it remains a criminal offence to make or negotiate an agreement or partake in negotiations on a commercial basis. Our solicitors cannot...

Domestic Abuse: More Than Meets the Eye

Louise Barretto
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Once again the spotlight has been turned to the issue of domestic abuse as predictably happens when there is a celebrity involved. There appears to be two camps in the Heard vs Depp saga playing out in the media. There are those who clearly think Heard...

What role do standards of living play in calculating maintenance on divorce?

Louise Barretto
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Just how important is the standard of living enjoyed by parties when working out how much maintenance should be paid on divorce? Many clients believe they should be able to maintain the same level or standard of living after divorce, as they did during the...

Maintenance for spouses

Louise Barretto
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In the past it was always thought that our courts in England were the most generous in the world in terms of the level and duration of maintenance for divorced spouses. Many spouses had been told that England was the place to issue divorce proceedings if...

Victims of Domestic Violence

Louise Barretto
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The Court of Appeal has just handed down a significant ruling that should benefit those who have suffered domestic violence by making it easier for them to obtain legal aid for their divorce and money issues. The Court has found that the changes made to...

What is not "misconduct" in a divorce case?

Louise Barretto
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I really enjoyed reading the judgment of Sir Peter Singer in the recent case of JS v RS . One gets a sense of the absolute frustration of the wife, who was the breadwinner in this matter. The facts, in summary, were: They were in their early forties and...

Will I get half of everything on divorce?

Louise Barretto
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This is one of the first questions many of my clients ask in our initial discussions. There is no certain answer because our law in this area is based on the judge’s discretion. Our job as family solicitors is to provide our clients with a range of...

South African Children Movement

Louise Barretto
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A South African Judge Rules that Mother and Her Children will have a “Better Life” in the UK than in South Africa In Durban, South African High Court a Judge has ruled in favour of a mother applying for leave to remove her two children to the...

When Love Breaks Down

Louise Barretto
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So it’s over for another year. Time for shops and bars to take down those ubiquitous red hearts and put Saint Valentine carefully back in his box. An appropriate moment, perhaps, to raise the unromantic subject of prenups. Prenuptial agreements...

Your Law - Q&A

Louise Barretto
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Family Lawyer,  Louise Barretto  answers your questions A friend of mine has told me that because a marriage is a “partnership” I have the right to open my spouse’s mail and to see his private documents.  I am going through...

Cheap is Not Necessarily Better

Louise Barretto
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According to the Law Society celebrity divorces such as that of Nigella Lawson from Charles Saatchi are giving “ordinary couples” an unrealistic view on what to expect when separating. The Law Society goes on to say that the Lawson/Saatchi...

Grounds for Divorce

Louise Barretto
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As news of Simon Cowell’s alleged affair with the wife of a friend surfaces in the media, it has also been alleged that the husband has now petitioned for divorce citing his wife’s alleged adultery with Simon Cowell as the cause of the breakdown...

Top 8 divorce myths and the truth

Louise Barretto
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I have been dealing with relationship breakdown for many years now, and during this time the myths that people believe in still have not changed. Myth No.1: the common law spouse myth My top most popular myth is the “common law spouse” myth. I...

Collaborative Process to cut the stress and acrimony of divorce

Louise Barretto
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Having practised family law since 1993, I have seen many different types of client. Some are completely focussed on seeking revenge and “taking him/her to the cleaners” no matter what the consequences, but the vast majority of the people that I...

Top tips for choosing a divorce lawyer

Louise Barretto
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Louise Barretto  provides some useful advice for when choosing a solicitor for your divorce. The law on finances in  divorce  cases is to a large extent dictated by landmark cases which involve many millions of pounds, and so these usually...