Despite Brexit, the UK is highly international with over 8 million people living in the UK who were born elsewhere. In addition, many UK nationals own properties or hold assets offshore. If your case has a “foreign” element you need expert advice on two separate issues as a matter of law:
Jurisdiction- which court should hear the case
Choice of law- which law should be applied by that court
If there are several jurisdictions in which you or your spouse is able to bring divorce proceedings we can provide essential advice on the appropriate forum and any associated financial and children proceedings. There may also be issues around habitual residence and domicile. Nationality is not the same as domicile, nor is it the same as habitual residence and great care must be taken when dealing with any criteria reliant on domicile. International family law cases are complex and involve a thorough working knowledge of the service of legal documents both within and outside the EU. It may also be necessary to instruct foreign experts and we can advise on the procedure, costs considerations and regulatory considerations in addition to helping to identify a suitable expert. If you own property overseas we can advise on the powers of the English Court, how to assess the net equity, costs of sale, tax considerations and inheritance considerations. We can also assist you with tracing assets overseas by using for example local land registries and obtaining third party evidence in this regard. Through our network of international contacts in leading family law firms we can ensure that you receive the appropriate advice in other jurisdictions. We have considerable international reach and a specialist knowledge of the international conventions that govern such disputes, which may involve assets, children, or both.