Family & Divorce
When parties separate or divorce, one of the main issues for them is to reach an agreement regarding their financial settlement. There are often pressing concerns such as where they will live, how they will pay their bills and what they legally entitled to claim.
If the parties are married, then there are a number of potential claims that can be made and factors that need to be considered. Every case is different and therefore there is not a one size fits all solution to financial agreements. There are a number of issues that need to be taken into account, including the age of the parties, length of the marriage, whether there are any minor children, the parties earning capacity etc.
The first stage is to establish what the parties own, their matrimonial assets. This is done by both parties providing financial disclosure and sharing them with each other. It is always preferable for this to be done on a voluntary basis without courts being involved, but they are there as a back up if either party is unwilling to disclose their financial situation or it is believed they are deliberately hiding or moving assets to avoid a claim. An application can only be made to the court if there are already divorce proceedings underway and after the applicant has had a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM).
There are a number of ways of negotiating a settlement:
• Reaching an agreement between yourselves
• Collaborative law
• Lawyer negotiation on your behalf or going to court
Each family is different. You will need to take time to think through your options and do so with professional advice and guidance. Your individual circumstances will determine which of these options will be best for you. Choosing the right process in the beginning could save you time, money and anguish in the long term.
We are committed to helping you find the best solution for your circumstances and family and therefore if you wish to explore any of the options available or an initial free appointment please contact Celia Christie on 02476 55 31 81 or via email.