Family Matters

Your monthly family law digest from Woolley & Co, Solicitors


April 2017

Recognising the important role of dads

So often many amazing dads out there are far too humble about their qualities and abilities. We want to give dads – or at least one dad in particular – his time in the spotlight and give people the chance to say thanks for all the good dads out there. That’s why Woolley & Co is sponsoring the Derby Telegraph’s Dad of the Year, as part of their Heroes of Derbyshire Awards Programme launched last month.

In Brief

Marriage and divorce in later life

As a family lawyer the work that you do changes with the times. The biggest change I’ve noticed in recent years is that I have seen a significant increase in...
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High Court divorce case confirms all applicants are treated equally

Divorce itself is quite simple from a legal point of view. It’s not often that we have lengthy proceedings about whether our country has jurisdiction to deal with a divorce, particularly when both the husband and wife have...
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4 Essential cohabiting couples facts - UK rights

More and more couples are choosing to live together rather than marry. Cohabiting couple families are now the fastest growing family type (according to ONS data).  There are now 3.3 million cohabiting couple families in the UK. Unfortunately, many don...
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Why parents should not use their children as “weapons” in divorce

Our mantra at Woolley & Co – and among many responsible family law specialists – is to make your divorce as amicable as possible. We know this is easier said than done. Divorce is a horrible thing for any family...
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Titanic divorce battle might have been prevented by a prenup

There does appear to have been a spate of high profile divorce battles in the news recently. The one that has really caught my eye this week is that involving Margie Hanley and estranged husband Michael, and their “titanic...
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As specialists in family and matrimonial law, we meet so many dads striving to do the best for their families, often in very difficult circumstances. Unfortunately, it is rarely those that you hear about. Instead, what tends to grab attention is the focus on absent father or those who do not live up to their responsibilities. It’s frustrating that more positive stories about dads fighting hard to keep their family together or do the best for the children, don’t hit the headlines in quite the same way.

Mums, perhaps understandably, are the ones who tend to get the recognition. Certainly, in the past it might have been mums who spent more time with the children, who children turned to in times of need, and who did much of the life management that is needed with young families.

However, we have come a long way since the 1950s and stereotypical family roles. The dynamics of our modern families are often more complex but no less exciting and fulfilling for our children. For many families nowadays, parenting is much more equally shared. Many fathers combine a full-time job with their family responsibilities. On blustery, cold and wet weekends in winter, many a dad can be seen coaching his own and other children on the football and rugby pitches.

There are many great dads in happy, successful relationships. As family lawyers, our experience tends to be of dads trying to keep their family together, wanting to maintain a proper relationship with their children, after their relationship with mum has broken down. We also see, in very tragic circumstances, those dads who become mum and dad to those children who have lost their mums, as recently highlighted by Rio Ferdinand in the BBC documentary ‘Being Mum and Dad’.

A couple may separate or divorce but parents never stop being parents. Post-separation, dads can help to maintain stability, play an active role in schooling and help their children feel loved through a very difficult time. There are thousands of positive stories out there that get little or no air time and that is why we chose to publically support the Dad of the Year category.

So this award, part of the Heroes of Derbyshire Awards, provides an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the roles of all dads throughout the county. The Woolley & Co family law team in Derby of myself, Andrew Robotham and Davina Warrington are looking forward to learning more about the great dads we are sure are out there in Derbyshire, and picking a winner – and giving them some well-deserved praise.

Michelle Brammer,
Divorce and Family Lawyer


Woolley & Co, Solicitors
Warwick Enterprise Park,
Warwick CV35 9EF
Call 0800 321 3832
Mobile 0330 330 3832
Outside UK +44 (0)1789 330310     

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