Separation and Divorce

Separation (Settlement Out of Court)
Our role is to help negotiate a settlement between the parties if possible.  When a marriage or domestic partnership breaks down there may be a range of legal matters to consider and settle. These may include property sale/transfer, sharing of financial assets and pensions, residence of and contact with children, financial maintenance known as “Aliment”. This kind of work cannot be costed exactly in advance as each case is unique and is subject to variables such as the degree of amicability, cooperation and the complexity of the family situation. Hopefully, a typical scenario would be that negotiation between ex-partners via solicitors can be reached and the parties enter into a legally binding Minute of Agreement (or Separation Agreement) which is signed by both parties and registered at the Books of Council and Session in Edinburgh. Our terms and conditions letter provide the breakdown for a time and line/hourly/unit rate charge and explains how this is applied.

A non-complicated, expeditious outcome based on the time and line rate would be typically in the region of £1,500 - £2,000 (plus VAT charged at the rate of 20%).

Outlays may include a share of the registration dues of the Minute of Agreement: £44 if paying for both extracts (copies); £22 if for one only. If a pension share is required then that would be an additional charge and we would require to write out to the providers and get approval of the wording of the specific clause and find out what their charges may be, which would be passed on as an outlay to you. We have seen charges of £750 or more from pension providers.

Our firm does not currently offer legal aid for these types of matters.

Divorce (Simplified)
Where there is no dispute about finances, and there are no children of the marriage under 16 years, and there is agreement and co-operation from your spouse, then the costs for a Simplified divorce in the Sheriff Court could be £300 (plus VAT charged at the rate of 20%) and a court outlay of £128 for two years separation, or £300 (plus VAT charged at the rate of 20%) and court outlay of £128 for one years’ separation with the consent of your spouse. Occasionally papers have to be served by Sheriff Officer instead of by signed for post and this will incur an additional charge and outlay which will be passed to you. Other incidental expenses would include obtaining marriage and birth certificates to be submitted to the Court. If we have to order an extract it will cost around £16 which will be charged to you as an outlay. 

Our firm does not currently offer legal aid for this type of matter.

Divorce (where finances and/or children involved)
Where there is agreement, assuming that there is no need for any Order from the Court other than divorce, and assuming full co-operation of your spouse and any witnesses, then the charge for seeking a divorce, and satisfying the Court as to the welfare of any child(ren), by preparing and having notarised (signed in the presence of a Notary Public) affidavits, may be £500 - £600 (plus VAT charged at the rate of 20%) plus outlays of Court fees of £159 and affidavit fee of £70. If papers have to be served by Sheriff Officer instead of by Signed For Post there will be an additional charge and outlay. We will need your marriage certificate and the child(ren)’s birth certificate(s). If we have to order extracts it will cost around £16 each as an outlay.

If there is no agreement, then it is simply impossible to give an accurate indication of costs because we do not know what may be involved in bringing the court action to a conclusion. We will discuss with you the likelihood of success and risks in your particular case. You will always have control of whether to proceed, or continue, or not. We would charge you for all the work we do on an hourly/unit basis as per our terms of engagement letter. This is true for all court actions. Our Principal Solicitor will speak to you and provide a rough idea of what may be involved, but in this situation we will provide you with regular interim fee notes so that you can keep a careful eye on this aspect of matters.  See our terms of engagement in court matters for further details.

Our firm does not currently offer legal aid for this type of matter.

Coronavirus - Covid-19 UPDATE

We are continuing to work remotely and we are available by telephone, email and video call including Whatsapp despite our office remaining closed.

We will endeavour to progress matters as efficiently as we can in these circumstances.

If you have an new enquiry then please e-mail or telephone us on 01463 239011 and we will be happy to discuss your matter and see how we can help you. 

For existing matters, there will inevitably be an impact on certain court matters and we will keep clients updated as soon as we have any further information. 

If you have any concerns please do not hesitate to call our office on 01463 239011 or e-mail us at  In general, it is business as usual so far as possible.

Legal Problems?

Let Us Help You.  Call 01463 239011 or e-mail your enquiry here

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for the professional manner in which you conducted your business with me. Everything was explained step by step in a way that I fully understood so there were no ambiguities or grey areas (no pun intended).
Client S.
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