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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.


Do you need help sorting out a fair financial settlement?

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.


I mediation compulsory now?

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02 Aug 11 #280989 by Action
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Just heard from my STBX that his solicitor says that there is a new law that makes it essential that couples go through mediation prior to any court proceedings. Is this correct. He has already instructed a mediation firm who will be contacting me. Should we not select a firm together and discuss costs or do I just assume that he is paying for it if he's organised it?

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02 Aug 11 #280990 by dukey
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mediation is not compulsory but an assessment for mediation is, the two are different, the assessment is a fairy short chat that should cost £70-£100ish, if mediation will help it could save you both a great deal of money so give it a go.

Usually the cost of mediation is shared equally but you can agree what you like.

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02 Aug 11 #280992 by bigfoot1
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Hi dukey, please advice is the judge got the power to order me out of my own sole name house which I brought after the divorce with mortage, family loans and divorce settlement. Now after 8 years the children decided to live with their dad. there is no one available but you, as you are seems knowledgeable enuff I hope !!!

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02 Aug 11 #280997 by Action
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Thanks Dukey for your superfast and clear response. I've replied to my husband accordingly, to set the record straight - worrying that he never questions anything his solicitor tells him!

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05 Aug 11 #281414 by Action
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Am I right in thinking that it would be unwise to start mediation until after we have each completed form E? I know that my husband is trying to make his business look less profitable by charging the cost of the house he rents against it, and is changing the way he works so that he earns less money. I really need to see all this in black and white before I can challenge it don't I? Should it be simply at exchange of Form E or after we've answered each other's questions and got direction from our solicitors (sounds expensive) as to what to go for?

Not sure if mediation is going to work for us being so far apart in what we want. He doesn't agree with principle of SM or compensation for it in a Clean Break - says if boot was on the other foot he'd go out and get a job that paid enough to support himself - what planet is he on?

The latest wikicalc I did, with more up-to-date figures balanced even further to my side - a lot more than I've suggested I need. How accurate do you think the wikicalc is? I don't want to be fighting for something unreastic - just what I see as fair for us to live reasonably equivalent lifestyles.

So many questions - so much anxiety!

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05 Aug 11 #281441 by rasher
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the mediation process can help you work towards the form E so I would say dont delay the process with that in mind. By the sounds of things you are already exchanging views about what each feels they think is fair so in fact mediation could be very helpful to you at this point as youre likely to get into a stand off with each other if the views are wildly different. Mediators dont seek to take sides but to advise on what is 'current' practice; and help both parties understand what any Court might see as reasonable.

Matters still have to be finalised via the court process but as Dukey says the more you can resolve in a round the table discussion, the less it is likely to cost.

Mediators work off evidenced finance so you will still receive the information you need about what your husband says he earns. Which ever process you use it wont prevent someone managing their earnings via self employed status. Thats a whole other issue Im afraid.

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05 Aug 11 #281459 by Imediate
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A small point - you don't necessarily have to use the form E if you go through mediation.

I'm a mediator (an even have an article posted on this site) and none of my clients have had to produce this intimidating and enormous form.

Instead, they give me all the information and supporting evidence, and I enter it onto a spreadsheet that shows who owes what currently and how it will be after the settlement has been completed.

Once the settlement has been agreed by both parties, we draw up a Deed of Separation (which is legally binding) if the couple is not in proceedings. If they have started divorce proceedings, a Memorandum of Agreement which a Solicitor can, to some extent, cut and paste into the wording of a Consent Order. This, together with the file of supporting evidence, will then pass before the judge who will ratify the Order.

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