We offer a professional, pragmatic and constructive approach tailored to your needs, providing you with clarity, focus and support during times which are often uncertain to reach an appropriate financial resolution for you.
In the event of divorce or civil partnership dissolution proceedings, the court has the power to make financial orders having regard to all the circumstances of the case to achieve a fair outcome.
The range of orders include but are not limited to, transfers of property, sale of property, deferred sale of a property where there are dependent children, lump sum payment, periodical payments for a spouse, commonly known as spousal maintenance and pension adjustment orders.
In order to determine which orders are appropriate for the individual circumstances of your case, the court must give first consideration to the welfare of a child/children of the family who has not attained the age of 18. In practical terms, that often means meeting the housing and income needs of the children of the family.
The court will also consider the income, earning capacity and financial resources available to them. The parties financial needs in terms of housing and any disabilities, financial obligations and responsibilities. The standard of living enjoyed during the marriage, the age of each party, the duration of the marriage, The contributions that each party has made or is likely to make in the future to the welfare of the family and whether there are any relevant conduct issues to be considered.
The above considerations will be balanced in determining a settlement which provides a fair outcome to each individual case, there is no set formula applied by the court or in practice. It is therefore of utmost importance for you to seek legal advice at the outset to manage your expectations, protect your financial position and achieve a fair settlement.
You will be advised to enter into financial disclosure in the first instance. Financial disclosure is the process of giving to your spouse or partner, and to the court, full details of your personal financial circumstances and your future needs and resources. It is usually the first thing we will ask you to do, as we will be unable to advise you properly about the likely outcome of your case without having a full picture of where both of you are placed financially.
In financial matters, disclosure is essential whatever process you intend to use to achieve a solution: in or out of court. The reason for this is that you need to have full financial information before you can agree how your financial arrangements should be separated out as the law says that the available resources must be split fairly. It is not possible for you, us or a court to know what will be a fair solution unless everybody knows the full financial picture.
Once financial disclosure has taken place, our expert lawyers will seek to negotiate an out of court settlement, or, alternatively, you can seek to reach an agreement direct with your spouse with the assistance of mediation.
If you are able to reach an agreement in full and final settlement, you will be advised to have the agreement recorded in a consent order to ensure it is legally binding an enforceable.
If you are unable to reach an agreement then mediation must be considered before you are able to issue court proceedings known as financial remedy proceedings. Once proceedings are issued a strict timetable is applied to progress the case towards reaching a financial settlement by consent with the assistance of the court, which includes measures taken against a spouse who is obstructive and fails to co-operate. The vast majority of cases reach an overall financial settlement by consent but if this is not possible then the court will impose a settlement upon the parties.
This will generally depend on issues in your case and the route you decide to take to achieve a financial settlement. To assist client’s faced with a financial dispute arising from divorce or separation, we have introduced a fixed fee structure to provide a degree of clarity at an uncertain and unsettling time (subject to eligibility).