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Family issues

International family law advice

The number of families who have links to more than one country grows daily. Marriages and civil partnerships between citizens of different countries are common. Families now often have employment, business and property interests in a number of different countries. If you are in this situation, it's important to consult an experienced international divorce lawyer if your relationship breaks down.

Any separation is difficult, but resolving the financial, property and child-related issues raised by international divorce can be particularly complex. You might be a expat UK national facing a divorce overseas, or a returned expat whose spouse is still in the other country and wishes to divorce abroad. You might need to deal with UK-based assets in an international divorce, or be looking to divorce in the UK while living abroad. For some people, "forum shopping" to find the most advantageous country in which to divorce may be an option. Others may be able to divorce in Scotland even if living overseas.

Our experienced international divorce lawyers, who understand the legal and practical issues raised in an expat divorce and have contacts worldwide, can help you navigate these issues and achieve a better and more cost-effective outcome.

Do any of these situations sound familiar?

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Clear advice

At Morton Fraser, we have considerable expertise in dealing with international family law cases and overseas divorce. We understand the issues which can arise from the international dimension of expat divorce - both legal and logistical. We will provide you with prompt, clear and straightforward advice on your options. If you need an overseas lawyer, we will use our international contacts to find one with the right expertise.

If you are based abroad, we can consult with you via Skype or Facetime, at a local time convenient to you.

Why choose Morton Fraser

Our experienced team has acted for clients based in the Middle East, United States, Asia, Europe, Australia, and elsewhere, including expats working abroad and expat spouses. With three highly experienced dual-qualified (England/Scotland) lawyers in our team, we can advise and litigate across the UK. We have also dealt with Scottish divorce cases involving overseas and offshore assets and assets held in trust, and have significant expertise in resolving international child abduction cases. Our team frequently co-operate with solicitors in other countries in order to achieve the best outcome for clients facing overseas divorce.

As well as explaining the law, we know how to make the logistics easier for you. We are experienced in project management of complicated cases including instructing translators; arranging for service of papers worldwide; coordinating the contributions of overseas lawyers; liaising with overseas witnesses and obtaining documents and other evidence from foreign jurisdictions.

Our experienced team is headed by Rhona Adams, partner and Fellow of the International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. As the only Scottish member of Interlaw, a worldwide organisation of law firms, we can find you or put you in touch with a local lawyer quickly.

By choosing Morton Fraser you will also have access to our specialists in other teams who are experienced in advising international clients. Our succession planning lawyers will help with updating your Will and Power of Attorney and ensure you understand any succession and tax implications which will inevitably arise following the change in your circumstances. Where necessary, we will liaise with overseas lawyers to ensure you have access to the best advice at all times. Our property team can also help with the sale, purchaser or transfer of any property interests you may have in the UK and again discuss how Scottish and UK taxes will apply. You will also have access to our wealth management team who can help with the restructuring of your assets and advise on pension and retirement planning. Our expert team of immigration lawyers are also on hand to help solve any immigration issues quickly.

Our approach to fees

We understand that you need to get a handle on what our advice is going to cost.  We offer fixed fee initial meetings where we can discuss the options with you.  Wherever possible, we provide tailored fee quotes for much of our work. If that is not possible for all of the case, we will give you a clear indication of the likely cost.