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What are we each entitled to in our divorce settlement?

What does the law say about how to split the house, how to share pensions and other assets, and how much maintenance is payable.

What steps can we take to reach a fair agreement?

The four basic steps to reaching an agreement on divorce finances are: disclosure, getting advice, negotiating and implementing a Consent Order.

What is a Consent Order and why do we need one?

A Consent Order is a legally binding document that finalises a divorcing couple's agreement on property, pensions and other assets.

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  • kudosfree
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29 Dec 07 #9678 by kudosfree
Topic started by kudosfree
I divorced 7 years ago and agreed to a Consent Order, which included monthly maintenance.

My ex has now applied for a variation as she believes I am earning more so should pay more.

We do have 2 teenage sons and I appreciate that costs increase, but she does not want to work so this puts more pressure on me.

Does anyone know of any sites or information on average income needs, for things like groceries, personal needs, as this would be very helpful.


  • Specialdad
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29 Dec 07 #9682 by Specialdad
Reply from Specialdad
CSA guidelines state that for two children you should pay a maximum of 20% of net pay.

So if your net pay is £1,000 a month you should pay £200 a month to her.

If your ex does not accept this get the CSA to sort it out. She will possibly get less and with considerable delay.

  • sexysadie
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29 Dec 07 #9693 by sexysadie
Reply from sexysadie
Just to be clear:

The CSA does not give guidelines, it operates the rules for what has to be paid in child maintenance, if it is applied for through the CSA. For two children, as Specialdad says, that is 20% of net pay. This is what the CSA will require the non-resident parent to pay if the children spend fewer than 52 nights with them; for more nights than this the payments are proportionately reduced.

It is of course possible to pay more voluntarily, and some parents do. I think it is also possible for a court to order a non-resident parent to pay for certain things that were already in place, such as school fees. If the non-resident parent is a very high earner then courts can also order payments in addition to the CSA statutory amounts.

Kudosfree, are the payments you refer to spouse or child maintenance? If it is spouse maintenance then presumably she can go back to court, but she risks a reduction in maintenance being ordered.



  • kudosfree
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30 Dec 07 #9702 by kudosfree
Reply from kudosfree
Hi Sadie
Thanks for info.

I am currently paying 44% of net salary in maintenance, but ex seems to think I am earning more despite having provided all form E info and docs.

The consent order only specified the monthly payment and did not split between spouse/children.

The CSA have never been involved and as the consent order includes provision for reducing periodic payment "pro tanto" by any sums payable pursuant to Child Support Assessment, I dont think this would help apart from highlighting the amount paid in SM.

My ex says her monthly income needs have increased from £1000 in 2000 to £2150 in 2007.

We split net proceeds of family house sale about 70/30 in her favour, but no pension split.

She was able to buy house without mortgage from proceeeds and I had to get mortgage to buy a cheaper house.

She now has a mortgage which she took to upgrade kitchen and bathroom and fund holidays.

I do feel her expectations are too high but wanted to have some benchmark to make a fair comparison.

Any views on normal expectations excluding mortgage would be appreciated.


  • ariesgirl63
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30 Dec 07 #9704 by ariesgirl63
Reply from ariesgirl63
Kudos, Is there any reason why your wife cannot work? With 2 teenage children I would have thought that the Court would expect her to be in a better position to support herself now than 7 years ago when the consent order was made. There is always the danger that her maintenance will be reduced if she reopens this issue, especially if, as you say, your income has not significantly increased.

  • Fiona
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31 Dec 07 #9730 by Fiona
Reply from Fiona
10 years ago results from a credible national study put the average annual 'regular' expenditure of raising a child at £3k, although the average costs aren't necessarily that important.

In deciding maintenance courts consider the financial resources and obligations of both parties. Other relevant factors include living standards and earning capacities.

  • maggie
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31 Dec 07 #9732 by maggie
Reply from maggie
ONS does stats - only source I'm aware of.
She'll have to show evidence of her needs for a variation in her maintenance - did you agree spousal maintenance for life?

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