Family Law

The breakdown of a marriage or a relationship can be a traumatic rollercoaster made even worse by uncertainty as to what your rights are and where you stand in the eyes of the Law.

At Clarke Jeffers we will guide you through the legal issues and problems that arise. This is a strictly confidential service and at Clarke Jeffers we will listen to you and set out your options in a clear and practical way.

If a marriage has irretrievably broken down then it is important to regularise your own situation and seek a separation at least in the short term which might later be followed up by a divorce for a number of reasons. One example of this would be that it is difficult for one spouse to attempt to sell property without his or her spouse’s consent if a formal separation or divorce has not taken place. This can apply particularly to a family home. Another example relates to a legal right share. In Irish Law if one spouse dies and no formal separation or divorce has taken place then the other spouse is entitled to take up to anywhere between one third to the entire estate of the deceased under a legal right share.

If at all possible, it is better to avoid court which can be expensive and drawn out. A court hearing will be heard in private, but things might be said that cannot be unsaid. You should bear in mind that if you and your spouse have children you will always be linked for the rest of your lives.

Clarke Jeffers also specialise in Matrimonial disputes where business assets, Family business and / or company shares are at stake.  Our unrivalled experience in the areas of Commercial and corporate Law allows us to advise on possibilities for the protection and / or claiming of such assets.  If you would like to know more about our expertise in this area, please click here.

“Emotion makes it almost impossible to see the wood from the trees. Good legal representation provides advice from a neutral position but stays focused on what the client needs.”

-Victor Clarke, Managing Partner.

We advise clients in the following areas:

  • Separation Agreements

  • Judicial Separation

  • Divorce

  • Guardianship

  • Custody

  • Maintenance

  • Matrimonial property

  • Protection/barring/safety orders

  • Co-habitation agreements

  • Enforcement of maintenance orders outside Ireland

  • Relocation cases

  • Proper provision

  • Civil Partnership


View our frequently asked questions.

The main difference between Judicial Separation and Divorce is that Divorce allows a person to remarry, whereas Judicial Separation does not.

Yes, however you will need to meet certain requirements. Once these requirements are met, you can make an application to the Courts for divorce.

Mediation is an avenue that is open to all parties going through marital breakdown, we can discuss your options with you.

Where you are financially dependent on your spouse, we can make an application to the Court’s for a maintenance order. The Courts will consider your income and outgoings and that of your spouse in making their decision. The Courts will also consider whether there are other dependent members of the family which also need to be maintained such as children. Advice should be sought from Revenue in relation to any tax that may be payable on maintenance.

The Courts are quite clear in that they prefer when people agree the arrangements to be made in relation to children. Where an agreement cannot be reached and a matter of dispute arises in relation to the children, the Courts generally order a psychologist report to provide their opinion on what is in the best interest of the children. This involves an expert interviewing both parents and the children, the expert when then provide their opinion on the arrangements that should be made in relation to the children. This opinion can cover, where the children live, the access the children have to either party, where they attend school etc.


Learn more about our key staff in this area.

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