Following a divorce (or dissolution, judicial separation or nullity), you can apply for a Financial Order to ensure you are adequately financially supported. This can include the division of property, payment of spousal support, and the payment of child support. A financial remedy order is often obtained as part of a divorce settlement, and can help to ensure that the financial aspects of the divorce are settled fairly and in a way that meets the needs of both parties. The financial affairs of divorcing spouses are not finalised without an order being in place.
Family mediation is usually cheaper, faster and is a far more amicable way to organise your finances without having to go to Court; however, mediation relies on you and your ex-partner to be willing to negotiate civilly and effectively in order for it to work. Before you can apply for a financial order, you will need to attend a MIAM (Mediation Information Assessment Meeting) with your ex-partner to determine whether or not your matter can be settled through mediation, unless one of the exemptions apply. If mediation is unsuccessful, then you will need to go to Court.
The majority of couples will have to attend a MIAM, but there are some exemptions. For example, you will not have to attend a MIAM if domestic abuse was present in the relationship, or if you have a disability which makes attendance difficult.
Financial remedy proceedings may result in one of the following financial orders which will be made by the Court:
– This transfers property in sole or joint names to the other party.
iii. A periodical payments order.
– These could be maintenance payments for one of the separating parties or child support payments.
-Maintenance for one of the separating parties or the children could be payable depending on the outcome of the case.
– Transfer of a pension or part of a pension to the other party.
– Alters a previous order
vii. Avoidance of disposition order.
– Prevents a party from dealing with some property.
viii. A legal services order.
– Provides for payment of legal costs.
The Judge will also be considering if a Clean Break can be made, which would mean you and your former husband/wife would have no financial claim against the other . Any children will be considered first and foremost in order to make their housing arrangements and decide on their maintenance.
Other things taken into account will be:
Ability to earn
Property and wealth
Standard of living
Role within the Marriage/Civil Partnership.
If you and your ex-partner can come to an agreement yourselves (either through mediation or informal discussion), we can assist you in preparing a consent order which details the agreement between you. It is then submitted into Court and considered by a Judge. The Application fee would be £53.
You will need to petition for a divorce online and can then submit your Form A. Once the application has been issued, the Court will issue a notice of first appointment (Form C) which will set out how the proceedings will begin. It will include a schedule of when relevant documents should be completed and submitted, so you can begin to prepare your argument. Usually, the Court will serve the Form C directly onto the respondent, though the applicant can choose to serve the respondent themselves if preferred.
Before commencing the application for Financial Proceedings, I would like to explain the stages of the proceedings. So that you can have an idea before you embark on the journey.
There is a duty on parties to consider mediation before making any such Application for Financial Remedy Order and any Applicant will be asked by the Court to confirm that they have attended a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting (MIAM) in most cases. The Court may adjourn Proceedings for mediation if appropriate.
– Chronology – this is a brief outline details such as the parties dates of birth, date of marriage, dates of birth of any children, date of separation or divorce proceedings etc.
– Statement of Issues – a concise summary of the financial issues in dispute between the parties.
– Questionnaire – this will often arise from the Form E where further clarification or information may be required. This provides an opportunity to request further documents from the other party where needed.
· By the First Appointment both parties should know about each other’s finances and the matters about which they agree and disagree.