Financial Separation Following a Relationship Breakdown

January 16, 2019

Regardless of whether or not you are married, following the breakdown of a relationship, there can be financial considerations which need to be resolved. Making sure you get the right advice early will help and make it less stressful.

There are a number of options once a decision to separate has been made; court proceedings only need to be initiated in cases where no agreement can be reached, so it is possible to avoid having to go to court by negotiating a settlement agreement.

As well as being an amicable means to reach a financial separation there is the advantage of being more cost-efficient, and parties do not have to wait a defined period after separation before entering into such an agreement.

It is important that each party obtains independent legal advice before signing an agreement around financial separation and each party needs to share full details of their financial position in order to make sure everyone is fully informed; failure to do either of these things may impact on the validity of any agreement and result in it being set aside, meaning it is void and cannot be relied upon.

Often the most common and significant assets to be dealt with are shared property and pensions. Up to date valuations of property can be done on a joint basis by an independently agreed valuer in order to reduce costs. property can then be sold with the equity divided between the parties on a negotiated percentage basis.

Pensions are often viewed as being more complicated; a cash equivalent transfer value (cetV) is obtained to determine the cash value placed on pension benefits. There are then a number of options for how this is dealt with; such as a pension sharing order, earmarking/attachment orders or offsetting. whilst this may seem daunting our team will work with you to make sure the process is clear.

Provision is also made within the financial separation agreement that neither party can make any future claim against the assets or interests of the other unless specifically allowed for, and reassurances apply in terms of providing against any party making a claim against the estate of the other in the event of death. this allows the parties to move on independently from a financial point of view.

Cleaver Fulton Rankin strives to ensure client’s needs are safeguarded so you can be confident when you trust us with your case that we will work hard to get the best result for you.
This article has been produced for general information purposes and further advice should be sought from a professional advisor. Please contact Lorraine Keown at Cleaver Fulton Rankin for further advice or information.

Lorraine Keown is an Associate Solicitor in Cleaver Fulton Rankin. With over 15 years experience of family law she is well versed in dealing with family matters and contact disputes. Should you wish to make an appointment or speak to us about your family law query telephone Lorraine on 028 9024 3141 or email