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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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Our consultant service offers expert advice and support to help you reach agreement on a fair financial settlement quickly, and for less than a quarter of the cost of using a traditional high street solicitor.


Property and finance issue

  • Freyanorse
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17 Aug 12 #350222 by Freyanorse
Topic started by Freyanorse
Friend mid divorce after 15 years. Three kids. One with visual impairment. Separated for 2 years. Needs home for self and kids and has been made redundant. New job on horizon if she can relocate. Gave up job for ten years to look after kids when special one born. STBX bore the costs as earns considerably more. Friend offers to have no maintenance for self or claim any pension from STBX if he will allow her all of house equity so she can move, start new work for council and youngest kid can go to special school nearby. Ex won''t comply. Term for little one starting soon. Friend redundant and possibly homeless in early October. Can''t get sizeable mortgage, can''t afford to rent. And can''t go to court. Suggestions for tactical play, anyone?

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17 Aug 12 #350230 by cookie2
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Tactical play? That is a rather unusual thing to ask. Usually one would ask what is fair, or what is a likely outcome.

That question cannot be answered without the full figures. But if her husband does not want to capitalize maintenance then there is not really anything she can do about it. Courts very rarely capitalize maintenance because it is not a very fair solution. Such a resolution would certainly need the husband''s agreement.

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17 Aug 12 #350239 by Freyanorse
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Divorce and fairness - that''s not how it works. Larger earner holds all the cards irrespective, particularly if case doesn''t get to court. What is fair is for the kids to have a home and mother to have a job. This is nothing to do with capitalisation of maintenance (that''s looking at total maintenance over a period as a lump sum for the purposes of Clean Break). The proposal is for the wife to give up all other claims for herself in order to house the kids now and keep earning. Anyone have any suggestions for how this should be played?

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18 Aug 12 #350250 by cookie2
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It is my experience that the lower earner holds all the cards.

Nobody can offer any kind of meaningful advice without knowing all the figures.

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18 Aug 12 #350268 by Freyanorse
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Doesn''t really matter about the figures, it''s the negotiation that counts. But let''s say house 200k, his income 40k, her income 15k. There''s simply not enough in the pot for her to house the kids unless he agrees. He won''t agree. She can''t afford to go to court, so essentially it''s stalemate.

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18 Aug 12 #350272 by Elphie
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From the sounds of it, if all she wants is to be given 100% of the house doesn''t sound like there would be any point in her going to a court if a court is unlikely to find in her favour. You might not call it capitalisation of sm but that''s what it amounts to.

You talk like its a game, asking for how to play it and tactical suggestions. Divorce is not a game, and you''d help your friend more if you didn''t go off all excited hunting for cheats and tips.

Your friend should go to mediation. Sometimes unusual splits of assets might work when both parties agree, but an unusual split (ie what your friend wants) is unlikely to be granted in court. And certainly not with in the time frame you have outlined. But your friend needs to go into mediation with a more open mind, it''s not her way or no way. For example, if sm was agreed and written into a Consent Order, a bank might take this into account as part of her income and agree a larger mortgage based on it.

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18 Aug 12 #350277 by happyagain
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As cookie has said, and he is very experienced in this field, it is impossible to comment without all the figures. But on what you have provided, I cannot imagine a situation where your friend would be awarded 200k equity and the ex nothing. He earns a good wage, but not a massive one, and once tax credits, dla, child benefit and maintenance have been added to your friends income then she will have a very similar net income to her ex (maybe slightly greater).

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