A specialist family solicitors firm with a strong internal ethos based upon a common understanding with an emphasis on achieving solutions to client problems through pragmatism and pro activity.
Friendly Family Law Solicitors in London, Marylebone, Paddington, United Kingdom and Internationally, dealing with all matters marital or relationship breakdown.
At Anthony Louca Solicitors we deal with all matters relating to family law and marital or relationship breakdown including, pre-nuptial agreements, separation, divorce and financial settlements, all matters relating to children, international child abduction, custody disputes, cohabitation, wardship, parental responsibility, adoption, residence and contact orders, grandparent and step parent applications and rights.
We are also specialists in forced marriages and abandoned spouses. ALS follows the principles of Resolution (www.resolution.org.uk
), an association set up to encourage a constructive approach to family disputes. This website gives information about the national organisation of over 5,000 family law london solicitors.
As the team leader of Family Law Solicitors department, Mr F. Anthony Argyrou, is a specialist in this area. He is an accredited specialist on the Law Society Family Law Panel and Advanced Panel. He is also an accredited specialist with resolution family law panel.
Divorce and relationship breakdown and matters concerning children are all dealt with effectively and sympathetically and with an understanding of our clients objectives.
Child Abduction ( Family Law )
Anthony Louca Solicitors is registered with Reunite International ( www.reunite.org
) as a specialist law firm with specialist family lawyers dealing with unlawful child abduction. This family law firm has a dedicated department specialising in situations where international child abduction has occurred,that is where there has been unlawful movement of children across international borders. This occurs when one parent removes their child from the jurisdiction without the consent of the other parent. Children may be moved between jurisdictions by agreement between their parents or as a result of legal proceedings or because they have been abducted.
Anthony Louca Solicitors is a panel member of the official solicitors list of specialists of the International Child Abduction and Contact Unit who are instructed in Hague and European Convention cases. The Hague Convention sets out the law and procedure that should be followed to ensure the immediate return of children who have been unlawfully taken from one jurisdiction to another and retained outside the country where they are habitually resident.
Our dedicated lawyers are able to make emergency applications (these are non means tested) for Legal Aid plaintiffs where children are brought to England. Where children are removed from England to countries that are not Convention States or brought to England from Non Convention States, Legal Aid is available provided the applicant can satisfy the means and merits test.
If the parent believes that there is an imminent risk of child abduction Anthony Louca Solicitors can take emergency steps to prevent the removal of the child. Urgent legal advice should be sought.
Divorce and Dissolution
At Anthony Louca Solicitors we are committed to adopting and providing a conciliatory and constructive approach to Divorce and as members of resolution (www.resolution.org.uk) we will deal with your Divorce sensitively.
To obtain a Divorce you need to demonstrate to the Court that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and support this statement by relying on one of the five facts:-
- That your spouse has deserted you for 2 years
- That you and your spouse have lived apart for 2 years and the spouse consents to the Divorce
- That you and your spouse have lived apart for 5 years (you do not need spousal consent for Divorce on these grounds)
- That your spouse has committed adultery
- That your spouse has acted in such a way that you cannot reasonably be expected to continue to live with them
Our specialist Divorce Solicitors London in Marylebone can advise you on all the options available.
Financial Settlements on Divorce
Upon Divorce all disputes relating to matrimonial finance and ancillary relief must be resolved.
Many divorce settlements are resolved in front of a Judge using the Court process. The court process gives the couple the Courts assistance in structuring negotiations. Some divorce settlements are resolved with the assistance of a mediator.
Upon divorce a person does not automatically acquire an interest in their spouses’ assets. The law sets out certain guidelines and criteria which are taken into account which depend on the circumstances and ‘needs’ of each spouse when formulating a financial settlement.
The court will use its discretion when assessing the claims of each spouse and very often, especially in a long marriage the court will look at what each party has brought to the marriage, that is, their contribution.
The Family Court usually has the power to make spousal maintenance orders upon Divorce, for example, lump sum or periodical payments or orders regarding property and pensions but it is unlikely to make financial orders concerning children.
Our aim is always to achieve the best settlement we possible can for our client. Most divorce settlements comprise 3 main elements, periodical payments, capital orders (lump sum and or transfer of property) and long term security (pensions or life insurance cover).
In some cases all 3 elements are bound together in a one off settlement. This is known as a “clean break”.
In order to assess what may be a fair settlement, each spouses assets must be identified and valued. It is only when the assets have been ascertained and their values agreed that it is possible to reach a settlement.
Children and Child Custody
At Anthony Louca we can resolve disputes relating to the care of children through the Court or through other means.
We always try to encourage agreement to avoid possible distress to all children and their carers involved in child custody disputes. It is always our approach to encourage the best interests of the child and to ensure that these are met. All children matters, whether they involve custody or care proceedings or any dispute relating to children are dealt with sensitively and expertly.
The main child custody orders in relation to children that are made by the Court are:-
- Residence orders – this determines where a child should live
- Contact orders – this determines when and how a person can see a child
- Prohibited steps orders – these orders prevent something from happening
- Specific issues orders – deals with a particular issue such as where the child should go to school or which religion it should follow, or changing the child’s name.
- Parental responsibility - that is the rights, duties and responsibilities associated with children and parenthood. It is automatic that mothers usually have parental responsibility as do fathers (provided they were married to the mother at the time of the child’s birth and the fathers name appears on the child’s birth certificate).
- International relocation – A parent cannot relocate to another country with the children without the consent of all holders of parental responsibility or with the permission of the Court. Application for leave to remove occurs when an ex-partner enters into a new relationship with someone from abroad and wants to take the child to live with them.
If this is not dealt with by agreement between divorcing couples child maintenance is usually dealt with by the child support agency (CSA).
Current changes in the law have been brought in and a new body has been formed called, the child maintenance and enforcement commission (CMEC) and this is taking over the CSA’s role. It is envisaged that the existing child support agency schemes will close by 2014.
Child support was normally calculated upon a percentage of the non resident parent’s net income. The formula for calculation of child support is due to change so that it is based on gross income. The new law encourages parents to enter into private maintenance agreements with each other.
Cohabitation Disputes ( Solicitors )
When cohabitees separate, unlike married couples, the rules relating to resolving their difficulties are far from clear. When cohabitees separate they face the same painful experiences that a married couple face with the same issues. As well as advising divorcing couples we also provide advice to couples who are living together including same sex couples. Such couples must obtain advice in the event of their relationship breaking down as the Law relating to their situation is different from the Law relating to married couples.
We can advise cohabitees on all matters relating to children, finances and division of assets.
Domestic violence, neglect and abuse whether that abuse is of a child or abuse of an adult can all have serious and long lasting physical and physiological effects on families and loved ones who are close to the victim.
If you have been affected by any of these experiences or know someone who has been affected, we at Anthony Louca can help. Our specialist lawyers and children lawyers will assist you in understanding your options and will provide you with legal support.
Where you or your children have been subjected to violence or harassment from a family member or cohabitee urgent legal advice is necessary. Various Court orders are available to protect you from further violence. We are able to advise and if necessary obtain non-molestation orders or occupation orders.
At Anthony Louca Solicitors our specialist divorce lawyers can help where a party has entered into a marriage by force. This is not the same as an arranged marriage. A forced marriage is a marriage where duress has played a big part. It is a marriage conducted without the willing consent of both parties. It is a marriage where one party has been put under unacceptable pressure. For example a victim of forced marriage may have been told that if the marriage is not entered into they will bring dishonour to the family or perhaps a persons freedom has been threatened, for example you may be told that your passport will be seized and not returned to you or that you will not be allowed to go home unless you enter into a marriage with a certain individual.
A forced marriage is considered to be a violation of your human rights which are internationally recognised and cannot be justified on any grounds whether it be religious or cultural.
No major world faith condones such marriages. Very often victims of a forced marriage require immediate action on their behalf to bring the victim home. Advice can be given and communication is provided with the British High Commission or other bodies in order to achieve the victims return to the UK.
Abandonment occurs when an allegation is made that a spouse has been abandoned abroad without the necessary passport documents that they need to re enter the jurisdiction of England and Wales. The child usually remains in this jurisdiction, normally with the other spouse. There is then a claim that the spouse that has been abandoned abroad has in fact travelled abroad abandoning the child with the other spouse.
At Anthony Louca Solicitors the demand for prenuptial agreements have increased. Prenuptial agreements are agreements made and signed before a marriage takes place to specify the distribution of assets and finances in the event of marital break down. Prenuptial agreements are designed to protect assets owned by each individual before a marriage takes place.
A prenuptial agreement is a common sense precautionary measure. No one getting married likes to think that it might end in failure. However there are a number of relationships which will irretrievably break down.