Mishcons and Debrett’s publish guide to best behaviour in divorce

Celebrity divorce go-to firm Mishcon de Reya has teamed up with Debrett’s – etiquette and manners advisors since 1769 – to publish a £12.99 guide on how to maintain a level of decorum and good manners in the usually messy business of divorce.

Debrett’s Guide to Civilised Separation, co-written by a group of Mishcon family lawyers, will be published next month. The guide offers advice on everything from “announcing the news of a divorce to friends and family” to bringing a “minder” along to social functions where an ex may be present to monitor “behaviour, alcohol intake and emotions”.

Typical pearls of wisdom advise that “throwing your husband’s vintage wine collection down the loo or cutting his suits to shreds might seem like a therapeutic gesture, but it can rebound on you and undermine your case.”

The guide also urges divorcees to send “friendly Christmas cards” to in-laws and estranged friends. That way, “nobody will be able to fault your good manners.”

Mishcon de Reya’s contribution frames Debrett’s advice on “correct behaviour” with a step-by-step legal guide that includes a calendar outlining divorce time frames and information on the first steps a couple should take in seeking legal advice.

Commenting on the launch, Mishcons’ head of family law Sandra Davis said: “Our combined experience has taught us that even in the most difficult of personal situations, courteous and considerate behaviour helps to reduce animosity and distress, particularly for the benefit of their children.

“This is a view we share with Debrett’s and it made them the natural partner to work with and produce the first guide of its type that promotes civility following separation, dispels common myths and provides information and reassurance for those who need it.”