• You are here:
  • Home »
  • Divorce »

How the Covid-19 pandemic is impacting more than just our health

Self-imposed confinement is predicted to cause a spike in divorce rate.

There is no question that the everchanging Coronavirus climate is certainly unsettling, particularly for those who are vulnerable or for the loved ones of those who are. However, it is not just our health that is at risk in these unsettling times.

COVID-19 has, with limited warning, unquestionably put added emotional and financial pressures, on families and couples. Sadly, this in turn, has been predicted to cause an increase in divorce rates.

It is understood that Baroness Shackleton of Belgravia, recently speaking to peers at Westminster, indicated that self-imposed confinement is predicted to cause a spike in divorces being issued. It is common for divorce rates to spike in January and September – both months coming after key holiday periods where families generally spend more time together. Unfortunately, this concentrated time can prove to be the final straw! Now, with many people self-isolating/spending increased time in the matrimonial home, and with almost half of marriages ending in divorce, it is sadly predicted that the same pattern will follow.

But it is not just family life that is feeling the effects of the current situation.

The true impact on the courts cannot be known at this time, however it is clear that it will not, for the foreseeable future, be business as usual. With that said, the court is reported as remaining focused on ensuring the administration of justice continues and that the service to the public is maintained. Whilst face-to-face hearings are to be avoided, there is to be a rapid increase in remote hearings, such as by telephone, Skype, Zoom and the like. Documents are to be filed electronically, with e-bundles being encouraged.

In regard to financial hearings, it is proposed that First Appointments are addressed by way of the accelerated procedure wherever possible – with parties being encouraged to agree directions by way of a Consent Order, which can then be filed electronically. Financial Dispute Resolution appointments can be scheduled privately, using the remote facilities of solicitor’s offices or barrister’s chambers. Remote arbitration is also an option.

Whilst we are facing an uncertain time, thankfully, with the aid of technology, and ability to work remotely, it can be seen that there is a feasible way through.

At Parfitt Cresswell we are keen to ensure that your relevant legal matters proceed as usual and that you can have peace of mind, knowing your legal needs are taken care of. With our video and telephone conference facilities you are able to communicate with our legal team without leaving the comfort of your home or office.

Find out more about our family law services.

Of course, in other circumstances we prefer to meet with our clients face to face but given these difficult and uncertain times, we would suggest that you simply call us on 0800 999 4437 or email enquiries@parfittcresswell.com and we can discuss how best to proceed.