Divorce And Family Lawyers: Germany

Brookman Solicitors in London is a specialist family law firm. We regularly deal with divorces with a German element, including divorces between:

  • Germans resident in England and Wales
  • English couples living in Germany
  • Couples who were married in Germany
  • Couples who have other family connections with Germany

Because of the differences in the way the courts in Germany and the courts in England and Wales deal with financial settlements and child arrangements it’s crucial to obtain advice on your Anglo-German divorce at an early stage.

Where To Divorce? Legal Advice On German Divorce

English and German expats can potentially obtain a divorce in either England or Germany. And the precise nature of the final settlement is often shaped by the approach of the judges in the country that hears the divorce. Prenups for example are sometimes easier to enforce in Germany than in England and Wales. And English courts have a reputation for protecting the financially weaker spouse to a greater degree than German courts.

Where more than one country can grant the divorce it’s essential to obtain advice on the best place for you to divorce. And you will often have to act quickly. That’s because the country that’s notified of the divorce first will usually decide all matters, including child arrangements and division of property.

German Divorce: The Legal Procedure

At Brookman we regularly handle Anglo-German divorce. Our familiarity with procedure means we can process your divorce efficiently and in accordance with your preferred timescales.

Since 1977 there has been a no-fault system of divorce in Germany – similar to the one that could soon be introduced in England and Wales. This means a German court will grant a divorce once satisfied that the marriage has finally broken down.

If the spouses have been separated for one year and both request a divorce or the respondent consents to a divorce, there is a presumption that the marriage has broken down.

If the couple has been apart for three years the court will also presume the marriage has ended and will grant a divorce – even if one spouse does not agree. Section 1565 of the German Civil Code allows for a divorce before one year’s separation if the continued marriage would mean unreasonable hardship for the petitioner.

How Will German Divorce Courts Approach Finances?

Courts in Germany will decide issues relating to maintenance, child arrangements and any overall financial settlement. German law considers each spouse the sole owner of assets he or she owned before the marriage as well as any acquired by him or her during the marriage.

If requested by one or both parties, the court will carry out a rebalancing or equalization exercise of those assets acquired during the marriage, including pension rights.

Child Arrangements And Anglo German Divorce

German courts tend to take the view that a child benefits from contact with both parents. If parents have joint care at the time of a divorce this is likely to continue after the divorce. If one parent wishes to move abroad (for example back to the UK) the courts will decide any application by considering the welfare of the child.

Along with 80 other countries worldwide Germany is a signatory to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. If one spouse removes a child from Germany without appropriate permission there is a well-established international procedure to secure the return of the child or other appropriate arrangement. At Brookman we act regularly on complex Hague Convention cases.

We are specialist family lawyers and divorce solicitors, based in London, and we advise clients who have a connection with Germany. Our clients can include those who are UK–based but originate from Germany, are living in Germany but have a connection with England or Wales, were married in Germany, or have other family connections with Germany.

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Divorce Videos

Henry Brookman has created several discussion videos in order to further explain some areas of divorce.

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Watch Henry Brookman summarise divorce and common divorce myths.

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Henry Brookman Discusses: Divorce
Henry Brookman Discusses: Common Divorce Myths

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About The Team

We are a specialist divorce and international divorce family law team, advising clients in the United Kingdom (specifically England and Wales) and throughout the world. We have a very people–orientated approach to working with clients. Henry Brookman has practised law for over 45 years, and our team has a wide range of skills and expertise. We are recommended by the Legal 500 and have been awarded the Law Society’s quality mark, Lexcel.

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Henry Brookman

With over 45 years' experience, Henry Brookman is the senior member of the team. He is described by The Legal 500 as ‘shrewd, savvy, sagacious and highly experienced’.

Partner

Talitha Brookman

Talitha is a Partner in the firm and a very experienced practitioner. She has been exclusively practising family law for over 15 years and is a recognised expert in her field.

Partner

Philip Morton

Recommended by The Legal 500, Philip is an expert in all areas of family law, including domestic and international financial disputes, fraud and commercial dispute resolution.

Partner

Natasha Slabas

Expert in all areas of family law, often involving cases that have an international element, including work in relation to financial settlements following divorce.

Partner

Aziz Malik

Aziz is a Partner at the firm and is highly regarded for his expertise on financial matters in divorce and has been recommended by the Legal 500.

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Kirsty Kelleher

Kirsty is a specialist family law solicitor recommended by The Legal 500. An expert in divorce, financial matters, child-related disputes and contentious probate cases.

Senior Associate

Kevin Danagher

Kevin specialises exclusively in family law, advising on all aspects of relationship breakdown, divorce, same sex marriage, marital agreements, and international family cases.

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Jennifer Douglas

Jennifer is a talented solicitor, experienced in all elements of family law, including high net worth financial proceedings, Children Act proceedings and financial claims.

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Gavin Yeung

Gavin has excellent experience in family law including divorce and financial proceedings and international child abduction proceedings involving Hague Convention countries.

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Pippa Marshall

Pippa’s experience covers all areas of family law including divorce, financial remedies, same sex relationships, pre- and post-nuptial agreements and cohabitee property disputes.

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Lorraine Imms

With over 20 years' family law experience, Lorraine can advise on divorce, matrimonial finances, cohabitee disputes, nuptial agreements and private children matters.

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Lorna Martin

Lorna is our Office Manager who oversees the operations of the firm including providing accounts support as well as secretarial support to the team.

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Evdokia Dikova

Eva is an AAT qualified accounts manager and holds full AAT membership (MAAT). She gained her degree in financial accounting from the University of Economics in Bulgaria.

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Victoria is a highly experienced Legal Secretary and a long-standing member of the team. She provides secretarial support for the office.

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Michelle Louison

Michelle provides secretarial support to Henry Brookman. A very experienced family law secretary, Michelle has worked in law for over 12 years.

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Patricia is an experienced secretary and office administrator, handling the calls that come into the office, greeting clients, and managing office presentation.

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