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A friend in need in divorce but not for a deed

A friend in need in divorce but not for a deed might sum up the effect of a recent court case requiring a solicitor to give evidence within the divorce finance proceedings of a former client according to Cheshire family solicitors Stonehewer Moss. It is the nature of the solicitor and client relationship that it must be confidential and your solicitor will usually be on safe ground resisting any demand to divulge the nature of your discussion but there are exceptions. For example, a case from the 19th century overcomes legal professional privilege if it is entailed in a fraud. A friend in need in divorce but not for a deed applies to the situation not uncommon for wealthy divorcing people that they turn to the solicitor they regard as a confidante for advice perhaps at the same time a seeking the advice of a divorce specialist.

The Court of Appeal permitted the decision of a lower court to compel such a solicitor to give evidence of discussions with the party on the basis that the solicitor concerned was consulted by the wealthy  man as his “man of business” rather than for advice as a specialist. This may outrage many but before you seek to discuss anything with a lawyer you use generally, ensure that you will not fall into this trap. There are useful search engines for specialist divorce solicitors at both the Law Society and Resolution. If it reveals a solicitor at the same firm as your man of business, e mail the specialist directly and ensure an appropriate Chinese wall is put up between you and your trusted adviser in other fields. See Kerman v Akhmedova 2018

A friend in need in divorce but not for a deed; don`t confuse the role of your divorce solicitor with your business counsel. For advice negotiation and representation in divorce please call 01606 872200 email visit


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Stonehewer Moss Solicitors, Citadel House, Solvay Road, Northwich, Cheshire, CW8 4DP

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