How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34885
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Clare is online now

Sorry to bother you, it is just a quick question... The family

This answer was rated:

Sorry to bother you, it is just a quick question... The family have split and the children are part of a social services/Cafcas order with each parent spending alternate weeks with the children in the FMH, there is also a molestation order against the husband. The husband has secured mail and has cashed in taken and hidden all the financial assets from the marriage and no financial statement has been filed. The orders in place are filed in Swindon however since those orders the husband went on his own to the courts in Salisbury and filed for divorce again controlling the mail, the wife has now received notice that the decree is to be issued next week and in the petition it says there is no order pertaining to the children or any other orders and that she is being treated as an abandoning mother and has had no say whatsoever in this process. Obviously Salisbury have been lied to in the worst way and we will be telling them that tomorrow as we need to put a stop to this process. Is there anything specific that we should get in place with immediate effect? Any help would be most appreciated. Thank you.
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
What was the court process that led to the child arrangements.
Does the wife want a divorce.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes she does want the divorce, and the arrangements were based around both parents having history with alcohol and the decision to keep them both in the children's lives while everything was being sorted out. The wife has been tea total for over a year and the husband is still drinking.

Were there Care Proceedings?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Dear Clare,


So to confirm the timeline, in November last year childrens services and Cafcass in Swindon were dealing, Cafcass gave the social worker permission to produce the section 7 which she did and the residency arrangements were put into place until the sale of the family home which will not be for a while yet. There was also an occupation order but he didn't adhere to that. There was also a non molestation order given against him. At this time he tried, unsuccessfully to get the judge changed.


He then submitted his divorce petition to salisbury court ensuring a change of Judge, telling them that the childrens arrangements were that she had them for one night every other saturday along with with many other falsehoods. They were already living week on week off in the FMH.


Her (legal aid) solicitor told her to ignore it as he had filed in the wrong court and they would not be able to hear it as the childrens issues were already in play in Swindon, so she ignored it.


She then received in January a letter confirming application had been served. To which her solicitor said she would acknowledge but ignore as again it was in the wrong place.


She has now received notice that the decree will be issued next week and it states that there is entitlement to the decree for proven unreasonable behaviour, she has never had a form or statement to fill in and has never been allowed or asked to contest this petition.


It also says that the court does not need to exercise its power with the childrens act 1989, which is impossible as the children are subject to an order.


Tomorrow morning we are going to salisbury courts to have the decree halted on the grounds that it is false and in the wrong place and that we do not understand why no effort has been made to have her side of the story told, or why the court did not do more research into whether he was telling the truth about the children.


That is where we are, any advice for our journey tomorrow would be very helpful and please don't say get a solicitor as she has been abandoned by the last one and has nothing but the will and support of friends to support her, he has lied and stolen and left her destitute.


Thank you for any help you can give.



Does she wish to be divorced?
What allegations are in the Petition?
Has an Order for costs been made?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you for your help.


1. Yes she wants to be divorced.


2. The divorce is on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour, the allegations are as follows:


2.1. That she has been an alcoholic from Jan 2010. (she had in fact sought help from her GP in 2011 and has been dry since April 2013)


2.2 Mental Health issues after the birth of the first child in 2005 (it is recorded that she suffered post natal depression after the second and third child not before)


2.3 That she has made at least three suicide attempts (she made one attempt/cry for help that is well documented and sought treatment immediately no other attempts have been made)


2.4. That she was a compulsive spender leading to business and personal debt of £100k. (She ran a profitable business for 15 years and had no debt, he cashed in over £100k of endowments without her knowledge and has bought land abroad to hide it, due to circumstances the business was in his name as a director even though he didn't work in it and he has taken everything)


2.5. That he has fallen out of love with her due to coping with the above.


3. Costs:


Any party to the proceedings on the 22nd May, may be heard on the question of costs at the hearing.


I hope this helps, we will be leaving for Salisbury at approx. 10.30am, once again thank you for you help.




There is no need to rush and no need to go in person.
This is a matter that can be dealt with by post if need be - and frankly should be dealt with (free) by the solicitor who has caused the problem.
If the lady wishes to be divorced then she may as well let the Decree Nisi go ahead - it saves her from having to issue and it has no effect on the finances.
At this stage the court should be written to with a separate Statement of Arrangements setting out the actual circumstances of the children.
In that letter the court should be informed that the petitioner was not honest in terms of the position with regard to the children and send copies of the relevant Court Orders.
The court should also be informed that whilst the mother does not admit the allegations contained in the Petition she will not defend it provided there is no Order for costs.
The letter should go on to invite the court to make no order for costs bearing in mind the misleading information given about the children.
The mother should also seek an explanation from her solicitor about the incorrect advice that was given
There is a lot here so do please ask if you need further details
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you so much for that, we will go down there so as to set her mind at rest that it is dealt with however your advice is invaluable and of course it makes sense to go ahead with the decree so long as the correct information is there.


If we hit any more walls I will be in touch and as for her solicitor I will be instigating enquiries into the advice given.


Thank you once again.



There is little that can be done at the court - she will be told to make an application and will not see anyone other than Clerks