Understanding the divorce process

Emma Heptonstall

As the number of divorces filed in the UK is expected to reach its peak in January, a former lawyer turned coach has launched a new product to help guide separated men and women through the divorce process. Emma Heptonstall – The Divorce Alchemist – has created a pack to help separating couples who are considering divorce in England and Wales to understand the legal process, support them emotionally, and to help them prepare for discussions around children and finances.

“Divorces in January increase by as much as a third as people either want to make a fresh start, or they get through Christmas for the sake of family and then file,” explains Heptonstall, who also acts as a family mediator. “The problem for many people is that the idea of divorce terrifies them because they hear the horror stories told by their friends or they read about the cost of celebrity divorces in the press. It doesn’t have to be that way. I have created a product that can be worked through at the readers own pace. I explain the process, outline the alternatives and help people rationally plan ahead. This increases confidence and saves time and money.”

Heptonstall believes that fear and lack of understanding adds to the pressure of separation and divorce, which in turn can increase legal bills significantly. By working through Understanding Divorce, people can begin their divorce having an overview of the whole process making it easier when taking legal advice from their lawyers.

“Divorce often creates conflict. A normal gut reaction is to hire a lawyer immediately, without any idea of what divorce entails, the options available and the alternatives to the traditional court process. Having an understanding of the options available enables people to make informed choices for themselves”, she explains. “Divorce can be expensive – a contested divorce ranges from £6k to £10k per person – contests often occur because people have unrealistic expectations. They become fixated about what they want rather than looking at what’s possible for them.”

Understanding Divorce includes a pack of 17 key concept cards, 30 daily lessons cards and a list of resources that clearly explain the divorce process to those considering divorce.

Heptonstall added: “Divorce isn’t easy, but an understanding of the process goes a long way to making it less traumatic, stressful and expensive. Understanding Divorce is about empowering people to be able to make decisions for themselves with or without the support of a lawyer.”