Family problems can’t always be dealt with within the confines of the 9-5 working day. That’s why the Langleys Family Law team have introduced The Clinic – a free, dedicated out of hours service available, by appointment, on Tuesdays between 5:30-7pm.
Members of our specialist team will be available to talk through a variety of issues at a time which is more convenient. Senior Paralegal Natalie Wiles discusses the benefits of the new initiative.
Why did you decide to start The Clinic?
We recognised that many people find it difficult to set aside the time to speak to us during office hours. Even with a free lunch hour, it’s not always the best time to be talking about difficult and emotional subjects. Trying to squeeze in an appointment during the working day, or around family life, can mean that the conversation is rushed or unfocussed which is not ideal. We wanted to help offer more flexibility.
We also know that many of our clients don’t live locally. We act for people across the country and it’s not always convenient to pop in and speak to us in person. A telephone chat outside office hours is a discreet option that can be booked in advance to suit your availability.
What sort of questions will you and the team be able to help with?
Family law questions are many and varied. The team has very broad experience and knowledge in all areas that impact the family, from agreements at the start of a relationship to the outcomes after a marriage has broken down.
We’re often asked questions about legal processes and how long they take; whether you might have to go to court, how to safeguard children or the financial aspects. No matter what the issue is, or how complex it has become, we are here to guide and advise.
What are you hoping to achieve with The Clinic?
We really want to help open the door to people who struggle to speak to us because of time constraints. It’s so important to seek advice before making crucial decisions that affect you and your family and we never want to see people ‘put off’ seeking legal advice because it’s too difficult to find the time.
We’re hoping that with additional flexibility, we can really help those who need support outside of the usual business hours.
How might The Clinic provide extra help for clients?
As with the advice we offer day-to-day, we will be able to provide guidance in relation to difficult practicalities, such as what to do if you move out of the family home or how to make arrangements for children.
We can also signpost to other services that may offer additional assistance, such as domestic abuse services, counsellors and other support services.
Ultimately, we are here to listen. Talking it through can help to relieve some of the pressure and making that first call is a big step.
How would you advise a client prepare for the call?
Once you’ve made your appointment, take a little time to think about what you want to get out of the conversation. Make some notes about the key issues and questions as well as any important dates or incidents, so that you have them to hand when we speak.
Make sure you won’t be disturbed during the call and that you can talk freely. If you are worried about remembering everything, have a trusted friend or relative with you to help. Having a notepad to hand during the call is also a good idea so you can capture any information you need.
Most of all, try not to be nervous. We are here to help and support you.
The Clinic launches on Tuesday 7th August and will be available every Tuesday for new clients between 5:30 and 7pm. Please call 0330 0947777 to book an appointment.