MK Safety Net
Neeraj works as a Kitchen Porter and is on a low salary, but not low enough to qualify for Legal Aid. He wants to initiate divorce proceedings against his wife, Harjinder, who has been having an affair with her work colleague. Neeraj was concerned about the costs if he needed advice he could not afford. He felt pretty confident that he could fill in all the necessary divorce forms, but just wanted the reassurance of some legal advice as and when he needed it.
He contacted the solicitor from the MK Safety Net rota on the Family Law Hub website and got a half hour appointment the following day. The solicitor showed him the correct forms to use and answered Neeraj's questions about the process. He also needed advice about his contact with the children and what his options were if things proved difficult there. She helped him with this too but did not take on the case formally.
Neeraj lodged his divorce application with the court himself, but Harjinder didn't acknowledge receipt of the application when the court sent it to her. Neeraj needed to find out what he should do. He was able to get a ten minute appointment with the rota solicitor who told him the various options available to him. Neeraj managed to get his divorce through with just a few bits of legal advice here and there and he and Harjinder sorted out their finances in mediation, then took that agreement (which wasn't binding) to the solicitors for a Consent Order to get a binding financial agreement. At that point Neeraj instructed the solicitor to do this work, but their involvement was limited to certain tasks and this kept the costs down. Overall, the whole process cost him less than £2,000, including mediation. This type of legal help might not be suitable in more complicated cases, but it helped Neeraj.