Alongside any relationship breakdown or divorce, you may have assets, finances, incomes, properties, pensions and tenancies that need to be considered and the law on what claims are available depends on the type of relationship you have, whether you are or were in a civil partnership, marriage or if you are unmarried.
Financial claims can also possibly be pursued by civil partners, cohabitees, spouses or for the benefit of any children depending on your case.
Child Maintenance and Financial Support
Whether you are married or unmarried you may be entitled to seek support from the other parent of the child in order to meet the child's reasonable needs.
Child maintenance is a legal obligation of a non-resident parent and is calculated based on the non-resident parent's gross taxable income and how often the child stays overnight with the non-resident parent, as well as if there are any other children in the care of the non-resident parent.
If you are unmarried there are options to pursue court applications for reasonable financial provision and "top-up" child maintenance in addition from the non-resident parent depending on their income.
If you are married the court's first priority when dealing with matrimonial finances is for the reasonable needs of the children to be met first.
Cohabitation Assets and Finances
Under English law, there is no such thing as a common-law marriage no matter how long the relationship or cohabitation. Most people are met with shock at the point of breakdown of their relationship when they find that they are not entitled to an equal division of the family finances.
Despite this, there is provision for certain contributions towards the family assets to be considered upon the breakdown of a relationship and if you have children together there is provision to seek financial support to meet the needs of the children.
Divorce and Matrimonial Finances
Married couples have a right to seek financial relief from each other and the courts have wide discretion in dividing assets and finances between spouses based on numerous factors. The right to seek financial relief remains open almost indefinitely and can only end if there is a court order in placed settling the finances or if the spouse seeking financial relief has remarried. It is therefore always important to consider a financial settlement at the time of divorce, even if there are limited assets or finances as this will protect your future finances.
What We Can Do
Given the complexities and importance of family financial matters, it is always essential to seek advice and representation from a qualified and accredited solicitor to ensure that you are fully aware of your rights and legal options.
We have extensive experience in dealing with all areas of Family Finances. We are members of Resolution and hold Law Society Family Law Advanced Panel Accreditation which demonstrates our knowledge, skill and expertise in this area of law.
Our Past Cases
Below are some family finances cases we have represented and conducted in the past:
Negotiated and amicably settled a divorce and favourable financial relief matter on behalf of a husband
Successfully pursued a financial relief application resulting in a substantive financial order and pension equalisation order favourable to wife
Obtained a freezing injunction on a husband's solely owned freehold commercial property to prevent a sale and thereafter pursued a contested application for financial relief for the wife
Pursued a successful jurisdiction race in the English courts and thereafter represented in heavily contested financial relief proceedings involving foreign assets concluding with a favourable outcome for transfer of joint property to husband and costs order against the wife
Amicably settled a civil dissolution and a clean break between two civil partners, with our client retaining the former family home for an equitable lump sum.