Financial Know How

Posted 8th May 2014

Written by Newtons Media Team

A divorce is a very difficult time for any couple to go through no matter how strong they are.

Whether or not the divorce or reasons for the divorce are agreed, a person’s judgment can be clouded due to high emotions.

The following common mistakes have seen many parties to a divorce wishing they had instructed a solicitor who can provide informed, sound and non-emotive advice.

1. Family home. Due to emotional attachment a party may push to stay in the family home without fully understanding the running costs and general expenditure. Only in exceptional circumstances will the other non-residing party be required to contribute towards the expenditure. In some cases it may be more suitable to consider purchasing a small property but taking a larger proportion of the sale proceeds.

2. Assets. Some parties feel that by obtaining some of the main assets such as the car or furniture is “winning” and achieving the upper hand. It is however worth remembering that such assets will depreciate in value unlike the equivalent value of these assets in cash.

3. Failure to provide financial disclosure. Whilst some parties are adamant that they know each other’s financial positions unequivocally, others are not so sure yet still proceed to a final agreement without requesting disclosure. There is always the chance that the other party has a bank/savings account that was unknown.

4. Joint accounts. Parties seem to delay in closing their joint bank accounts. Whilst continual use can be helpful and saves changing the direct debits until a financial agreement is reached, it is important to note that as joint owner, any overdrafts or debts on the account are jointly liable.

5. Failure to formalise financial arrangements. It is extremely important that any financial agreement is incorporated into a final financial order, known as a Consent Order. This is a binding document which will be approved by the Courts and signed by all parties. Failure to do this could result in the divorced partner being able to make claims on assets acquired after the divorce.

A solicitor can offer you advice to avoid the above. If you wish to discuss these or any other family law issues, please contact the Family Team at Newtons Solicitors. We offer a first class approach to what can be a difficult and upsetting time. Please note we also offer a free half an hour confidential appointment and can be flexible when needed. We have car parking and wheelchair access.