Family Law is an increasingly important part of a solicitor’s work and
finding equitable and just solutions in cases of separation and family
breakdown, especially where children are involved, requires knowledge,
skill, patience, understanding and good will.
The breakdown of family relationships is fraught with emotional and financial
upheaval to those involved. Family Law cases entail serious legal and
financial issues which need to be addressed in a sensitive, constructive
and effective manner.
Geraldine O'Neill Glynn has many years experience as a Family Law solicitor
and is familiar with the impact that such cases can have on both the immediate
and the extended family. Separation and divorce cases are highly emotive
and it is in everyone’s interest to find some legally binding agreement
that avoids the expense and acrimony often associated with lengthy court
The initial approach is to try and reach some sort of accommodation between
the parties involved. In some instances court orders will be necessary
due to the nature of the assets or to give effect to certain elements
of the agreement, however, the aim is to attempt this through consensus
wherever possible. Where prior agreement cannot be reached, the only recourse
available to the clients would be to pursue the case through the courts.
The main areas of a Family Law Practice at Geraldine O’Neill
Glynn Solicitors include:
• Barring, protection and safety orders
• Child custody and access issues
• Cohabitation and non-marital relationships
• Dealing with the financial consequences of marital breakdown
• Paternity disputes
• Property disputes and disputes in relation to assets
• Separation and divorce
Geraldine O'Neill Glynn is a practitioner in the intricacies and application
of Collaborative Law. The use of Collaborative Law in marital breakdown
cases - which started in the US some years ago as a response to dissatisfaction
with the adversarial system (i.e. the courts) - is now used increasingly
by Family Law solicitors in Ireland. The main emphasis of this approach
is that the parties involved - including solicitors and partners – meet
to try and reach agreement on the issues instead of taking the case to
If you are interested in this approach, it can be explained to you in
more detail at a consultation. However, for the process to work, each
party must have a solicitor who is fully trained in the process and committed
to the ideals of Collaborative Law.
Separation and Divorce
Separation refers to couples who are living apart but where all the legal
issues between them have been more or less resolved by way of a Separation
Agreement or Judicial Separation. However, the parties are not free to
remarry. All matters relating to the separation, such as the division
of assets, custody, access and maintenance, are all dealt with in a legally-binding
agreement or alternatively, by way of court orders and the format known
as a Judicial Separation. There are several ways of achieving a legal
separation: 1) Mediation; 2) The Collaborative Law process; 3) Negotiation
through solicitors and 4) By court order.
The circumstances surrounding the separation of any couple are different
and each individual would need to meet with a solicitor to discuss their
case and what action to take.
Under Irish Law, parties are entitled to divorce once the couple has been
living separate and apart for four years out of the last five years. All
divorce cases must be resolved by way of a court order. As with separations,
the circumstances surrounding each individual’s divorce are different.
The specific details of each case would need to be discussed in detail
with a solicitor in order to decide an appropriate way forward.
Break-ups of family relationships are by their nature difficult. Circumstances
vary from couple to couple and it is essential that any person considering
a separation or divorce should have a thorough consultation with a solicitor
to decide the best way of handling the case. At the first consultation,
the solicitor will give the client a general overview of what is involved
in either their separation or divorce or indeed, any other difficulties
which they may have concerning Family Law, for example, issues relating
to maintenance, access or custody. A solicitor can then take full instruction
from a client in relation to their particular difficulties or problems
and advise them accordingly.