Separation Agreement Solicitors | Howells Solicitors
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Separation Agreement Solicitors

Separation Agreement solicitors based in Sheffield, Barnsley, and Rotherham, delivering advice in London and Nationwide.

You and your partner may decide to separate but not immediately feel the need to get a divorce. However, this does not mean that you should not take legal advice to protect your own best interests. Tackling the legal aspects of separation when you’re married is complicated, and it can be difficult to understand your rights and responsibilities. There are also considerations that need to be made regarding finances, assets, and children which you may not fully understand without legal advice.


Our team of family law specialists are one of the largest family law teams in the north of England. They are highly regarded in their field of work and have unrivalled experience in their specialisms. They are accredited in the Legal 500 as one of the top law firms in the country and Resolution and Law Society accredited, and are have countless positive reviews from clients and are rated 4.9 out of 5 on Review Solicitors.

Why You Need a Separation Agreement

You and your partner may decide to separate, but not officially divorce. This could be because:

  • Your religious beliefs
  • Worries over the cost of a divorce
  • You want time and space to work out if you want to end the marriage
  • You’ve been married for less than a year

If you do not have a formal agreement, such as a Separation Agreement, this could lead to arguments with your partner, such as:

  •  Household bills and debt repayments
  •  Possessions, including any assets acquired after the separation
  •  How to deal with joint assets
  •  Arrangements for any children involved

If you inherit, experience business success or a financial windfall, your spouse is within their rights to try and make a claim on such assets, as there has been no legal end to your marriage.

The same can be said if your spouse gets into difficulty with their finances, you may suffer too. If your spouse is sued or engages in any financial misdeeds, your assets could be at risk.

Also, any assets or pension acquired after a separation can be in the “pot” for division in a divorce if they are not safeguarded. A family law solicitor can advise on this.

Whilst a couple may part amicably initially and feel that they can trust each other, doubts and problems can arise as time passes, circumstances change, or new relationships may form with other people.

A Separation Agreement could help you divide your finances and decide how you are going to live apart during a separation and set out how arrangements early if you do decide to divorce in the future.

What is a Separation Agreement?

Separation Agreements can make the process of separation easier, which may be a particular concern when children are involved.

A Separation Agreement records who is to have what and what the parties’ responsibilities are. The purpose of the agreement is for both parties to decide on how they would like their assets in the short term, but also how they would be dealt with in any future divorce proceedings.

We can help you draw up a Separation Agreement that covers:

  • Who will live where
  • How shared debts will be split
  • Who has responsibility for repaying any debts
  • How shared assets are divided, such as property, money, investments and business interests
  • How to divide joint bank accounts and savings
  • Whether there will be ongoing maintenance payments
  • Where any children will live
  • When you or your partner will get access to any children
  • How you or your partner will contribute financially to the care of any children

The advantages of a separation agreement include:

  • It provides clarity and certainty over your separation
  • It gives clear evidence that both you and your partner consider your relationship to have ended at this point (although it doesn’t prevent you from getting back together in future)
  • It can prevent arguments over assets that you may have received since separation
  • Fairly negotiated agreements will generally be upheld by the court if challenged in the future

A Separation Agreement doesn’t mean you have to divorce – couples often find that a period of separation allows them to reconcile on better terms.

However, if you decide to divorce at a later stage, a Separation Agreement can be used to draw up a Financial Consent Order, which becomes legally binding when the Decree Absolute is granted in divorce proceedings.

Services Provided by our Separation Agreement Solicitors in Sheffield, Barnsley, Rotherham, London and Nationwide

Our family law solicitors cover the full spectrum of divorce and separation cases, including:

Our Family Law Team

Our Family Law team represent clients in:

The team also offer a free 30-minute consultation on your first visit, which can be made face-to-face, on the phone or virtually. Contact us on 0114 2496666 to make an appointment.

Whey Choose Howells Solicitors

The Howells Matrimonial teams are one of the best in the country and one of the largest in the north of England. They been consistently highly ranked for family law work in the north by the Legal 500. Howells have over 40 years’ experience supporting families and are ranked high on Review Solicitors where they have a rating of 4.9 out of 5 for their client care. The team are also accredited by Resolution and the Law Society.

The team offer flexible appointments to suit your availability and are transparent with their fees, offering affordable services without compromising on quality. You can make an appointment face-to-face, on the phone or by video. Contact us on 0114 2496666 to make an appointment.

The family law team at Howells are often praised by clients for their honesty, compassion, and down to earth approach with their clients, and are excellent at their client care making the process of your case less stressful.

Our Fees

Our family law team offer transparent and affordable prices to suit all financial circumstances. You will always be kept up to date with costs and they offer fixed fees for most areas, so you are always in full control. Our affordable and fixed fee services for family law matters are designed to give you peace of mind over costs at what can be a stressful time.

Find a full list of our fees here.

Separation Agreement FAQs

Are Separation Agreements legally binding?

Although not an official court order, a properly drawn up separation agreement is likely to be considered by any court asked to rule on its validity. To increase the likelihood that a court would enforce a separation agreement it is essential that both parties have independent legal advice on the terms of the agreement.

We have a shared pet – Can that go into our agreement?

You can lay out the arrangements for any family pet in your separation agreement and include care arrangements, who will pay for the insurance, vet bills, and other expenses.

Can we write our own separation agreement?

In theory, yes, however if there is any dispute in the future, the court are less likely to accept your separation agreement. Instructing a family law solicitor could save you legal fees in the future. Also, without professional legal advice you may not fully understand what your rights and responsibilities are.

How long does a separation agreement last for?

A Separation Agreement does not expire.

Can we stay legally separated but married forever?

Yes, you could do that. However, we would suggest you seek legal advice at the earliest possible stage.

Free Consultation

The family law team offer a free 30-minute consultation on your first appointment, which can be made face-to-face, on the phone or by video call, as well as flexible appointments that can be arranged to fit around lunch breaks or work commitments. Contact us on 0114 2496666 to make an appointment.

Book Now

How can we help? Contact us today

Contact us on 0114 2496666 and one of our advisors will be in touch to discuss your situation. We will take some initial information and if we can help, we will book you in for a consultation with a legal professional.

Contact our team today

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The Howells Solicitors law team are compassionate, down-to-earth and professional, offering you the best expert advice. Get in touch with solicitors in Sheffield, Rotherham, and Barnsley to see how we can help. Fill in the form or give us a call at:

The Divorce and Separation team

The Howells Matrimonial team is one of the best in the country and one of the largest in South Yorkshire. They been consistently highly ranked for family law work in the north by the Legal 500. Howells have over 40 years’ experience supporting families and are ranked high on Review Solicitors where they have a rating of 4.9 out of 5 for their client care. The team are also accredited by Resolution and the Law Society.

Sensitive and compassionate in her client relationships, Alyson Siddal understands that she is not dealing with ‘cases’ but with people, not bound by legal process but in real lives. Furthermore, Alyson has been a key part of Howells Solicitors for over 30 years and offers a wealth of expertise and experience. Alyson and the Matrimonial team are highly ranked in the Legal 500 rankingswith specific feedback on Alyson which is “Alyson Siddall is a very experienced matrimonial lawyer who is personable and approachable in addition to being an excellent solicitor”.

Sharon Lockwood is a highly regarded Family Law and Divorce Solicitor in Rotherham, with a specialism at dealing with complex cases involving children and high value assets. Sharon is very active in the local community of South Yorkshire and receives a high amount of praise from her clients and colleagues and has established herself as one of the most distinguish divorce specialists in the region.

John Clegg is a family specialist and covers all aspects of Matrimonial law including divorce, civil partnership and cohabitation breakdown, financial matters arising on separation and divorce, pre and post-nuptial agreements and protection from domestic abuse.

Legal 500

The Legal 500 2022 edition ranks Family as a top tier firm in Yorkshire and Humber, saying “Family head Alyson Siddall, matrimonial specialist Sharon Lockwood and children team head Sarah Walker are the key names at Howells Solicitors. Based in Sheffield, Rotherham and Barnsley respectively, they oversea a team that is particularly well  known for high net worth cases with assets ranging from three to six million pounds.

The firm recently expanded its department with the addition of a collaborative law facility. John Clegg is an additional name to note.”

Alyson Siddall

Family Law

0114 249 6659
John Clegg

Family Law

0114 249 6795
Sharon Lockwood

Family Law

01709 364000
Wendy Bailey

Family Law

01226 805 190
Colin Musgrave

Family Law

0114 249 6709
Louise Ellis

Family Law

01709 364 000
Caroline Euinton

Family Law

0114 249 6643
Laura Hill

Family Law

0114 249 6638
Danielle Mahyar

Family Law

01226 805 190
Ramandeep Kaur

Family Law

0114 249 6703
Michaela Logue

Family Law

0114 2496666