Divorce and separation can be painful, but, sometimes, the most difficult and acrimonious part of ending any relationship can be resolving issues over finances.
When dealing with financial division after breakdown, the law generally sets out a list of factors that it will take into account. These include the needs of your children, as well as your individual contribution to the marriage. Whatever the circumstances, every case will be decided upon its individual nature.
Thrings’ Family team has in-depth expertise in identifying and resolving financial disputes surrounding relationship breakdown. We can advise on all areas, including negotiation, valuation and, if ultimately necessary, we can resolve the dispute in Court.
Where possible, however, we like to keep you out of Court, if we can. Our experts are all trained in the collaborative law process and if you and your partner are able to negotiate but wish to do so through your lawyers, then we can talk to you in detail about your options.
The financial resolution process
To start the financial resolution process, it is essential that you and your spouse give us a full and frank disclosure of your capital, income and pension provisions.
This means disclosing the following documents:
- Surrender values of any life assurance policies.
- Transfer values of any pensions.
- Up-to-date balances of any bank or building society accounts.
- Details of any liabilities, credit cards, loans and copies of any statements or loan agreements.
- A current valuation of any property that you may own together with, where appropriate, a redemption figure in relation to any mortgage secured against the property.
- A copy of your last payslip and, if possible, a copy of your previous P60.
- A schedule of your average monthly expenditure.
- Details of any other income that you may receive, or capital not referred to above.
- An up-to-date set of accounts (if you have your own business).
- A schedule of all income you receive from your employment.
- If you own a property, details of how much of the deposit you paid.
- Details of who paid the mortgage.
- Details of any solicitor who acted in the purchase of a property.
- If you are renting property, you need to state whether it is rented from the council or from a private landlord, the rental paid and whose name the rental agreement is in.
Once all these documents are in place, we can then advise you on the division of your assets, on any maintenance payments and how pension provisions should be dealt with.
Where possible we’d like to keep you out of Court. We will always try to reach an agreement through negotiation and, if appropriate, direct meetings. Assuming it is possible to achieve an agreement through this means, it will be drawn up into a formal Court document known as a Consent Order. This will be filed and considered for approval by the Courts, in order to ensure that it is binding.
If, however, we cannot reach an agreement using these methods, then we may need to consider applying for the Court’s assistance. The Court will then have the power to make an Order in connection with the division of the assets.
Once your financial affairs have been finalised, either by agreement or by an Order of the Court we will be able to introduce you to other experts within the firm who can help you address your future security, for example, by updating your will or investing your assets for the future.