Divorcing couples advised to speak to lawyers ahead of end of Brexit transition period

Partners in contentious divorces involving assets, family etc. in EU countries should speak to a lawyer “as soon as possible” ahead of the end of the Brexit transition period, the Government has said.

The warning comes just eight weeks before the UK officially departs from the EU, leaving the UK free to strike its legal agreements with overseas jurisdictions, including the EU.

This means, therefore, that EU legislation concerning family proceedings will no longer apply to the UK from 11pm on 31 December 2020.

This could affect your case in a variety of ways, including the country that your family law dispute – such as a divorce, childcare or child maintenance matters – is heard in and how decisions made in one jurisdiction will be recognised and enforced in another.

Under the current rules governing cases involving the courts of England and Wales, divorce proceedings started before the end of the transition period will continue under the current EU rules. After the divorce becomes final, it will still be recognised in an EU country, as well as England and Wales.

However, divorce proceedings started after the end of the transition period will be governed by new rules.

Couples currently or soon to be involved in a case that may be affected by these changes should speak to their lawyer as soon as possible. For export support and advice, please get in touch with our family law team today.

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Alison Green
Alison joined Mackrell.Solicitors in 1989 and qualified as a solicitor in 1991, becoming a partner in the firm in 2010. Her expertise covers matrimonial work, including divorce and the associated financial and children issues; pre and post-nuptial agreements; co-habitation disputes; civil partnership agreements and the breakdown of civil partnerships.