Family law is provided in Ireland by several Family Acts, which together give the framework regulating aspects related to marriage, divorce, inheritance, child support and many others. According to the articles 41 and 42 from the Irish Constitution, the concept of family represents the most important social unit and it is legally recognized through marriage. If you may need more information on the family law,our family law solicitors in Dublin can provide you with in-depth presentation of the most representative provisions stated in the Family Acts.
Divorce and separation
Our family law solicitors in Dublin offer advice and legal representation to individuals who wish to start or have already commenced their divorce proceedings
Civil partnership issues
Legal advice about the statutory civil partnership, how it is concluded, how it affects taxation and inheritance in Ireland and the registration scheme for same-sex couples
Married couples can conclude a separation agreement instead of filing for divorce. This allows them to live separately, as provided by the legally binding contract
The division of property
Assistance and mediation from our family law solicitors in Dublin in all matters concerning the division of property before and after divorce
Information about the treatment of pension in case of divorce. Other clarifications and legal assistance on one's rights following divorce, separation or the death of a spouse/family member
Our family law solicitors in Dublin assist former spouses who wish to come to an agreement concerning important matters for their children after divorce (living arrangements, education, etc.)
Legal advice when calculating the child maintenance amount. Representation in front of the District Court or the Circuit Court, depending on the maintenance amount
If you are in need of legal counsel before applying for custody, or if you are seeking to gain custody, our family law solicitors in Dublin can assist you
Our attorneys in Ireland can help you start the adoption process for a child who is an Irish national or for an international adoption
Advice on concluding the prenuptial agreement, which is not strictly binding, however, can be used to sort many different issues in case of marriage breakdown
Similar to the prenuptial agreement, our team can help you sign an agreement concerning the division of property and other matters after your marriage in Ireland
Our team assists those who wish to make a will, change an existing one or revoke such a document
Our lawyers assist individuals with the administration of the estate with identifying, securing an managing the assets
Complete assistance during the succession process for the spouse, civil partner, and other family members as per the Succession Act in Ireland
Legal assistance, advice and representation for victims of domestic abuse in Ireland
Services provides by our family law solicitors in Dublin
Our team has relevant experience in handling all cases related to Family Law, including but not limited to separation and divorce or the treatment of children after the separation of their parents. These issues are delicate ones in most cases as each family situation is different and the events that led up to the point where one of our family law solicitors in Dublin was enlisted will have had a specific impact on various members of the family. We understand that litigation and disputes involving family members, and especially those involving children, require a certain level of finesse and attention.
Our team is ready to assist you with the following:
Divorce: our team can provide practical, time and cost-effective solutions for couples that have decided to formally end their marriage;
Separation: we can help companies draw up a separation agreement, which will allow them to outline the terms of their separation; please take note that this is not the same as divorce;
Child maintenance: complete assistance offered by our family law solicitors in Dublin for calculating the child maintenance amount as well as handling any other issues related to children;
Couples rights: we assist all couples, including unmarried ones and those who have entered civil partnerships when they have issues dealing with their rights;
Prenuptial agreements: before you decide to marry in Ireland, our team can help you draw up the prenuptial agreement and handle matters concerning your separate finances.
Getting a divorce in Ireland is, as noted above, subject to a set of very clear conditions for application. The fact that the parties need to observe these, combined with the need to reach agreements on important matters such as children, joint property, and other matters, makes it ideal for the former spouses to work with an experienced divorce lawyer. Applying for a divorce with the help of a professional is easier.
The services related to children provided by our team of lawyers in Ireland also include chose related to guardianship. In all aspects concerning various disputes between the parents regarding the upbringing of their children after separation or divorce our team will focus on the best interests of the children.
We also assist clients who wish to use alternative dispute resolution methods such as mediation. The specialists at our law firm in Ireland are able to handle cases of varying complexities, including domestic violence and abuse. If you are in such a situation, please do not hesitate to ask for help as soon as possible.
Please keep in mind that these are part of the services provided by our family law solicitors in Dublin. For more information we invite you to reach out to our specialists. You can also watch the following video for more details:
Marriage and cohabitation in Ireland
Family law in Ireland may refer to the right to get married, to have children, to divorce or to live in a civil partnership. Several Acts are regulating all these matters and many others and, if you are interested in the Irish family legislation, our lawyers in Ireland can offer you relevant information, according to your needs.
Marriage in Ireland is legally recognized for any two individuals who have the legal capacity to get married and whose age is of minimum 18 years old.
Our family law solicitors in Ireland can help you with answers to any questions you may have before getting married. These can include, but are not limited to:
The legal implications: the marriage is legally binding and the two parties need to have the capacity to marry; this step also includes having given the Registrar 3 months’ notification or have a Court Order of Exception; our lawyers can provide more details;
Engagement without marriage: if, for whatever reason, the couple does not move forward from the engagement phase (the marriage will not take place)m it can mean that gifts between an engaged couple (such as the ring) may be returned if requested; it should be noted that this only applied to engagement, not co-habitation;
Pre-nuptial agreements: our family law solicitors in Ireland can help couples who wish to set out the manner in which their property will be treated in the event of a broken marriage; these types of agreements are not legally binding in Ireland, however, the judge may take the terms set forth in the document into consideration;
Documents required to get married in Ireland: the first required document is the 3 months’ notice to the Registrar, given at a civil registration service; required documents include the identification documents (passport, birth certificate), divorce decree or death certificate, where applicable;
Marriage ceremonies: there are three types in Ireland, the civil one, the religious one and the secular ceremony; our solicitors can answer questions about the civil ceremony and conditions and provide general information about the other two types;
Marriage registration in Ireland: the Registrar issues the Marriage Registration Form and this is the document that gives the couple permission to marry; this is signed by the spouses, the two witnesses and the person who solemnizes the marriage.
Our team is also able to assist couples who are interested in getting married abroad and are both Irish citizens. Legal counsel may be required as the marriage will be partly governed by the laws in the country in which it will take place. The couple should know that their marriage will be registered according to the laws in that country, with the applicable local bodies and the Irish General Register Office has no role in doing so as marriages that take place outside the country are not typically registered in Ireland.
If you and your partner prefer to enter into a civil partnership, as opposed to getting married, our family solicitors in Ireland can help you with information about the registration of the partnership or on the manner in which it can be ended.
The Civil Partnership and Certain Rights and Obligations of Cohabitants Act 2010 introduced a scheme for a statutory civil partnership registration for same-sex couples in January 2011. The main rights and duties of the partners are set forth in this document.
It is useful to note that civil partners are not treated differently from married couples in terms of tax and welfare issues. The partnership is also registered by the Registrar General in a register of civil partnerships and the types for this process are similar to those for the registration of a civil marriage.
In the same way that a civil partnership is similar to marriage in terms of registration, it is also subject to the same principles for termination. This means that a court in Ireland can grant a decree of nullity of civil partnership in much the same way as in the case of marriage. The civil partnership will then be dissolved in the same manner in which the divorce dissolved a marriage. An important condition to apply for the termination of the partnership is for the partners to have been living apart for 2 out of 3 years. The parties may decide on the terms of the separation by drawing up a separation agreement.
An important distinction is made between married couples or those who are under a civil partnership and those who are simply cohabiting. These individuals do not have the same rights and obligations and there are no inheritance rights applicable in this case. However, our family solicitors in Ireland remind cohabiting couples that they are able to set up joint tenancy or tenancy in common (two different options, that can be explained upon request). In case of children of cohabiting couples, custody should be mutually agreed upon, however, if this is not possible, the court will decide who will have custody of the child or children. Nevertheless, the unmarried mother is the sole guardian of the child who is born outside of marriage and is the one to have sole custody. Our solicitors can give you details on how the father can also apply for joint or sole custody.
Divorce in Ireland
Divorce was introduced in Ireland under the Family Law (Divorce) Act 1996 and in its original form it could only be granted if the spouses could prove that in the last five years of marriage before filing for divorce, they were separated for at least four years; the divorce was granted if the two could show that there were no prospects for reconciliation.
The Family Act 2019 entered into force on December 1 2019 and it brought important changes to the divorce law: the couple must have been living apart for at least 2 years out of the previous 3 years before filing the application for divorce. The new law also provides a new definition for living apart as the situation in which two individuals are not living together as a couple in an intimate and committed relationship (the relationship is not considered an intimate one solely based on its sexual nature). The two can be living in the same household and still be considered as living apart if the definition applies in their case.
Our family law solicitors in Dublin can provide more details about the “no fault” approach to divorce and will guide you throughout the process once you are ready and as the living apart clause applies in your case. In other countries, the grounds for divorce are clearly defined by law and they include adultery, violence or desertion. In Ireland, the law allows for a more liberal divorce regime, nonetheless, behaviour can still be taken into consideration by Court.
In some cases, individuals may benefit from legal aid in Ireland. Our lawyers in Ireland can provide more details.
Child maintenance in Ireland presented by our family law solicitors in Dublin
If from a marriage resulted children and the two spouses have decided on getting a divorce, they must share the custody of the children. According to the Irish law, a child is considered dependent on a parent until he or she reaches the age of 18 years old, or even 23, in the situation in which the child opts for superior studies (bachelor/master degree). Our family law solicitors in Dublin can give you more details about this matter.
The maintenance is decided in the court, according to the level of income of both parents, on the assets they own and the needs of the child/children. In case if you are interested in child maintenance in Ireland, our Irish lawyers can represent you in the Court.
Family Law statistics Ireland
When divorce was introduced in Ireland in 1997 a surge of applications was expected. However, that was not the case and couples that wished to terminate their relationship preferred judicial separation in certain cases.
Below, our team of family law solicitors in Dublin outlines some of the statistics on marriage and divorce made available by the Central Statistics Office:
Opposite-sex marriages: there were 21,262 in 2017 and 20,389 in 2018; the average age of the groom was around 36 years and that of the bride 34 years;
Same-sex marriages: 759 were recorded in 2017 and 664 in 2018; the average age of the male was 40 years and that of the female 38.7 in 2018 and 40.5 in 2017;
Divorces and separations: the number of separated people increased by 8.9% between 2011 and 2016;
Number of divorced individuals: in 2016 there were 94,924 men and 127,149 divorced or separated women.
Our family law solicitors in Dublin provide pragmatic services that are tailored to the needs of the family or the individual submitting the request. We offer solutions that are both efficient and cost-effective and focus on delivering much needed legal support when out clients need it the most: whilst going through difficult times.