Financial orders - settling finances following divorce

 

By Hasnain Shah

Within financial proceedings during divorce, the courts have the discretion to impose several orders either by agreement of the parties or through a court application.

The financial orders include:

  • Maintenance - whereby one spouse makes periodical payments to the other
  • Lump sum order - A one-off payment from one spouse to the other
  • Sale of property - an order for the matrimonial home or another property to sell now or at a later date, with the proceeds divided
  • Property transfer - the court can order for a house to be transferred to one spouse
  • Pension sharing order - dividing the pension, so that a proportion of the pension is transferred to a fund for the other spouse

There is no rigid procedure the courts use when deciding how to divide the assets or how much maintenance should be paid. However, the courts must consider relevant factors, specifically those outlined in the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973.

These factors include the following:

  • Financial needs and obligations which each spouse has or will have
  • The net income, earning capacity, property and other financial resources which each spouse has or is likely to have
  • The housing requirements of each spouse, specifically the need to house children
  • Contributions made by each spouse or contributions likely to be made towards the welfare of the family, including looking after the home and/or caring for the family
  • Standard of living enjoyed during marriage
  • Age of each spouse and length of marriage
  • The conduct of the spouses, if considered inappropriate to disregard
  • Value of benefit loss by either spouse with the marriage coming to an end

Both parties should seek independent legal advice as to the most beneficial financial order for them.

If you would like to be put in touch with a recommended family solicitor to advise you further on financial orders, please call Caven on 08001 221 2299 or fill out the web form.

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