London Solicitor Financial Matters
Upon the breakdown of a marriage, civil partnership, or a relationship, it is sensible to consider how best to deal with any assets of the parties as swiftly and as fairly as possible.
Our London family solicitors are able to guide you through this process by mediation, negotiations with voluntary disclosure, or through the Courts.
In an ideal world, parties to a marriage/civil partnership will agree between themselves how financial matters are to be dealt with at the end of the relationship. Even if an agreement has been reached, it is sensible to have the terms of an agreement set out in a Consent Order. Our London family solicitors are able to draft a Consent Order for you, which is then forwarded to Court for sealing. To draft a straightforward Consent Order where the parties are in agreement, our charges are £650.00—£1,000.00 plus VAT.*
If an agreement in respect to financial matters is initially not possible, but parties are keen to reach a financial settlement without the need to attend Court, then our London family solicitors can represent you and enter into negotiations with your spouse/civil partner after voluntary exchange of financial disclosure has taken place, with a view to a financial settlement being achieved. Once a financial settlement is reached, it will be set out within a Consent Order.
Our charges to negotiate a financial settlement with voluntary exchange of financial disclosure are between £2,000.00—£4,000.00 plus VAT. All such work us undertaken on an hourly rate basis.*
If an agreement and/or negotiations are not possible or successful, then an application to Court for a financial Order (previously known as ancillary relief) will be necessary. Please note that before any application to Court can be made, it is a requirement that parties must first attempt mediation, unless you are exempt from the same.
An application to Court for a financial Order will typically involve 3 hearings; a First Appointment Hearing, a Financial Dispute Resolution Hearing, and a Final Hearing. This whole process takes approximately 1 year.
The law in relation to financial Orders is set out at Section 25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. In considering an application for a financial Order, a Court must give first consideration to the welfare of a child of the family who has not attained the age of 18. The Court shall then have regard to the following:
- the income, earning capacity, property and other financial resources which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future, including in the case of earning capacity any increase in that capacity which it would in the opinion of the court be reasonable to expect a party to the marriage to take steps to acquire;
- the financial needs, obligations and responsibilities which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future;
- the standard of living enjoyed by the family before the breakdown of the marriage;
- the age of each party to the marriage and the duration of the marriage;
- any physical or mental disability of either of the parties to the marriage;
- the contributions which each of the parties has made or is likely in the foreseeable future to make to the welfare of the family, including any contribution by looking after the home or caring for the family;
- the conduct of each of the parties, if that conduct is such that it would in the opinion of the court be inequitable to disregard it;
- in the case of proceedings for divorce or nullity of marriage, the value to each of the parties to the marriage of any benefit…which, by reason of the dissolution or annulment of the marriage, that party will lose the chance of acquiring.
Our London family solicitors have vast experience in dealing with financial matters flowing from the breakdown of a marriage or civil partnership. This ranges from limited assets cases to high net worth cases. We also deal with interveners asserting a third party interest in the assets. It is important to note that each case turns on its own facts, and no two cases are the same.
The costs of being represented in an application for a financial Order is not insignificant, however, it is in your best interests to be legally represented, especially where there are assets to deal with. We will give you the best possible advice and our London family lawyers will represent you robustly but fairly to achieve the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us to discuss the matter of fees.
*please note that these are cost estimates, and are subject to change depending on your case, and the number of hearings required to resolve your matter. We will of course inform you should there be a change in your cost estimate.