New study reveals the impact divorce has in the workplace

Published: 4th December 2014

A new research study by national family law organisation Resolution has revealed the impact that divorce and separation can have on productivity and attendance in the British workplace.

Resolution Divorce Infographic (large)The study, commissioned as part of their third annual Family Dispute Resolution Week which took place between 24th and 28th November, was conducted by market research agency ComRes, who surveyed 4,031 British adults between 26th September and 2nd October.

The results showed that following a relationship breakdown, 15% of workers had noticed a drop in productivity in the workplace, 10% of workers had to leave their jobs or have a colleague who followed suit and 16% of workers had noticed an increased number of their colleagues taking time off work through stress-related illness following a divorce or separation.

The study also revealed that despite the negative impact that divorce and separation is having on the workplace, only 10% of people surveyed said that adequate help and support was available from their employer when coping with a relationship breakdown and 34% expressed concerns that more needed to be done to help support colleagues at work if they have gone through a divorce or separation.

National Chair of Resolution, Jo Edwards commented on the results of the study, saying, "It can be easy to forget that sometimes things going on outside of work have a profound effect on what happens within it, as these figures show."

"With workers across Britain seeing a notable impact on productivity, taking sick leave, or even leaving their jobs altogether, divorce and separation is an issue that bosses need to take seriously and look out for the warning signs."

Resolution are a national group that cover the whole of England and Wales and who encourage family law firms to register as members to try and promote a non-confrontational and a more amicable approach to divorce and separation. K J Smith Solicitors are members of Resolution and as members we agree to adhere to their Code of Practice to ensure that our approach to family law complies with the ethos of Resolution.

Rather than facing lengthy and costly court battles, Resolution promote three main alternatives to try and help couples to find a more positive solution. They are Family Mediation, Family Arbitration and Collaborative Law.

Family Mediation is a process of using an impartial third party (a family mediator) to encourage communication and to facilitate negotiations between both parties in order for them to come to an amicable agreement in regards to division of assets, finances and custody of children. Family Arbitration is where both parties elect an arbitrator who makes the decisions on their behalf, with the arbitrators decision being final and legally binding. Collaborative Law is where both parties elect a collaborative solicitor to act on their behalf and they all meet face to face to come to an agreement.

"Divorce is a really stressful thing to go through – but there is a better way to deal with it. Resolution members help people manage their separation in a way that minimises conflict, focuses on the needs of any children they might have, and helps them avoid court if they can. Divorce and separation affects a huge number of people – 73% of people in Britain have been through a split themselves, or know someone who has", said Jo Edwards.

At K J Smith Solicitors, we have fully trained family mediators and collaborative solicitors and we can assist you in finding a professional arbitrator, should you wish to take this route. For more information or to arrange a free consultation with a member of our team, contact us today on 01491 630000 (Henley-on-Thames), 020 7070 0330 (Central London), 0118 418 1000 (Reading), 01753 325000 (Windsor) or 01256 584000 (Basingstoke).

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