"Fleming v Fleming
In this case the wife was awarded £1,000 a month for 4 years with no bar on an extension to this period."
How could "no extension to this period permitted" be written in to a Consent Order?
ie under the legislation it's always possible/permitted for either side to apply to vary the amount and term of maintenance payments if you can prove the current arrangements are unfair/cause undue hardship - can a Consent Order remove that right?
My understanding is a Clean Break could be ordered after a specific period of maintenance (periodical payment) and worded along the lines no further claims may be made. This period of time would be considered by the court to be sufficient for the recipient to readjust without undue hardship to the end of financial dependence on the other party. Time-limited orders are less used when there are dependent children. They are more used when the marriage has been short and childless and one party just needs a period of time to enable them to support themselves.
In practice I think such an order makes it hard to apply for an extension, but the Courts can use their discretion when it can be shown the current arrangements are unfair/cause undue hardship. Hope that helps.