More help and advice
How to find a family mediator
Ask friends and family for a recommendation or your solicitor if you have one. Or use the family mediation finder provided by the government to find one near you. (See 'Links to other websites').
Mediators who do Legal Aid funded mediation have completed further training that can last around two years – you can search for them by ticking the bottom box on the search tool.
Some people feel safer with a mediator who is also a qualified solicitor. They can’t give you legal advice but they are obliged to tell you if you are about to make an
agreement that is very different to what a court would order. If you want a mediator who is also a solicitor, use the search on Resolution’s site. In the results it specifies how long the mediator has been a family law solicitor.
Don’t be afraid to phone around and compare prices.
How to find a good solicitor
Ask friends and family for a recommendation. Or you can find a good family solicitor near you who believes in a constructive, non-confrontational approach on Resolution’s website: www.resolution.org.uk/findamember.
It’s ok to phone around and compare prices. Some (like the Co-operative legal services) will offer help for a fixed fee, others may offer a first meeting for free.
How to find a collaborative lawyer
You can find your nearest collaborative lawyer on Resolution’s website too: www.resolution.org.uk/findamember.
Help with understanding your housing rights
Shelter can provide housing advice over the phone or in a housing advice centre.
You can find your nearest advice centre here: http://england.shelter.org.uk/get_advice/advice_services_directory?pc=&Search+Locally=
Helpline (for callers from England): 0808 800 4444
Open 8am-8pm Monday-Friday, 8am-5pm Saturday-Sunday
Calls are free from UK landlines and main mobile networks (Vodafone, O2, EE and Virgin Mobile).
Shelter Cymru asks that callers in Wales only use their helpline if it is an urgent problem. For less urgent problems they ask you to contact your nearest housing advice centre. Find yours here http://www.sheltercymru.org.uk/contact-us/our-offices
National Debtline can offer you free advice over the phone.
Helpline: 0808 808 4000 – open Monday – Friday 9am-9pm, and Saturday 9.30am-1pm
They also have a useful online tool called my money steps - https://www.mymoneysteps.org/
Helpline: 0800 138 1111 - open Monday – Friday 8am-8pm, and Saturday 9am-4pm
Step change also have a useful online tool called Debt remedy - http://www.stepchange.org/
Help and support for single parents
Gingerbread’s Single Parent helpline provides support and expert advice on anything from dealing with a break-up, to going back to work or sorting out maintenance, benefit or tax credit issues.
Helpline: 0808 802 0925 – open Mondays 10am to 6pm, Tuesdays/Thursdays/Fridays 10am to 4pm, and Wednesdays 10am-1pm and 5pm-7pm.
They also provide lots of useful information and support forums on their website.
Families Need Fathers
Families Need Fathers have a helpline that provides support and a listening ear to dads, mums, grandparents and other members of the family.
Helpline: 0300 0300 363 – open every day, 7am -Midnight
They also provide some helpful factsheets and online support through forums.
Help with the divorce process or dividing your possessions
Wikivorce provides free support, information, forums and a calculator to help you work out how to divide your money and property.
Helpline 0800 4488 66 44 (for calls from landlines) or 01202805020 (for calls from mobiles)
Open 9am-11pm, 7 days a week.
Royal Courts of Justice Advice Bureau’s Courtnav and free ‘Guide to ending a marriage or civil partnership’
Courtnav is a free online tool (also provided by Royal Courts of Justice Advice Bureau) that uses your answers to questions to help you fill in most of the forms. A solicitor then reviews your completed forms before you can sign them. You can ask the CourtNav team for advice about how to complete the questions – online or by email, at any time, for free. The guide and Courtnav are designed to be used together. We expect these to be published in autumn 2013 on both Advicenow and Royal Courts of Justice Advice Bureau’s website.
Help taking financial or children's issues to court
We know there are situations where problems can't be solved outside the court. We are currently working on step-by-step guides to taking financial issues or arrangements for the children to court. We expect these to be published in autumn 2013 on Advicenow.