Are there alternatives to solicitors and barristers whose fees are often immense and not affordable over time for the vast majority of people who are involved with family law?
Are there alternatives to lawyers where many parents who have experience of them find them to be aloof, often unavailable, combative (raising the temperature unnecessarily) and slow at moving matters along?
These are questions we are often asked. Our experience is that there are excellent or at least as good alternatives to lawyers who will get the same results or better, even with a massive reduction in costs compared to lawyers i.e. A family law McKenzie Friend
Of course you have to find a McKenzie Friend who knows what they are doing with your case and are going to improve your prospects of success at Court, not always easy.
A McKenzie Friend can sit with you in Court and provide advice and information that will make a real difference to your case. A good McKenzie Friend will stop you making the mistakes that will delay your case or put you in a poor light with the Court making it difficult for you. They will help you with any CAFCASS preparation and queries, assist with letters and other documents such as statements. They will make sure you concentrate on what matters (your children) and not be diverted by the other side or the Court. Often they have been through the Courts themselves successfully and importantly from Fathers Rights viewpoint be passionate about shared parenting or equal parenting.
We know the family law Courts are unhelpful very often to fathers in particular (to say the least) but they are for many the only option and so fathers need to give themselves the best chance of getting real progress for their children. This often means using the family law system and getting that system to do what it should do for your children as quickly and competently as possible, very difficult many times.
A good family law McKenzie Friend will help you draft a Position Statement for each hearing so your view is in front of the Judge early and is hopefully the starting point of any negotiations. This takes some skill and judgement from your McKenzie Friend, the Position Statement is usually a couple of pages at most and must be relevant to be useful and not counter-productive.
So it is crucial to get assistance from a McKenzie Friend who can do this well, again some McKenzie Friends simply do not have the ability or skills, so choose a McKenzie Friend with a proven record (testimonials) and not just what they say about themselves. Google carefully the names of possible Mckenzie Friends you are considering to check their background.
Be careful when choosing a McKenzie Friend that they are not on a crusade against the Courts using your children as martyr’s for the cause. Keep feelings about the system to one side when it comes to talking to the authorities about your own kids otherwise things can be difficult in Court. We on this website campaign for real change but we make sure our children are as little affected by this as possible and certainly individual Court cases are not a place to campaign as it will affect your chances and your children sadly.
There is some further information on Mckenzie Friends on The Custody Minefield
An example of good McKenzie Friends we are aware of are Family Law Decisions
Whatever you do in your situation and whatever help you have in the end, we sincerely hope for your children’s sake that it works out well for all.