Help with Arranging Finances on Divorce and Separation

For married couples whose lives and finances may have been intertwined for years, or even decades, the idea of having to divide money and property can be daunting. Our team of divorce solicitors in South Wales have experience across all family law matters, including supporting and guiding divorcing and separating couples come to financial settlements which work for the whole family.

At Graham Evans and Partners, we understand that divorce and separation can be a tumultuous process for families, and conflict common, particularly where finances are involved. We specialise in providing clear, practical advice tailored to your specific situation, so you and your former partner can reach a financial settlement as smoothly and efficiently as possible.

Where feasible, we value calm and cooperative negotiation and discussion over court proceedings, which often turn confrontational. We are highly skilled in methods of Alternative Dispute Resolution such as family mediation and collaborative law, so you have the opportunity to settle any issues and disputes with your former spouse in a neutral, friendly environment.

Graham Evans and Partners cover South Wales in Swansea, Bridgend, and Port Talbot. Get in touch with our skilled divorce lawyers today by contacting your local branch, emailing mail@geplegal.co.uk, or by completing our enquiry form to the right.

How our divorce lawyers in South Wales can help you with your finances on divorce or separation

Sorting out finances on divorce or separation can be an overwhelming task. However, most couples are able to come to an agreement without resorting to court. Our team of skilled divorce lawyers can provide you with pragmatic advice regarding all financial matters, from division of property to spousal and child support.

Below are some of the financial divorce and separation matters our team can assist you with.

Financial settlements

Financial settlement is the term used to describe a couple’s final agreement about how their finances will be arranged and divided after divorce, dissolution, or separation.

In most situations, couples are able to agree a financial settlement without requiring the court’s involvement. However, to ensure your former spouse sticks to the agreement, we can help you legally formalise your agreement by applying to court for a consent order.

Division of assets

Below are some of the assets and financial matters you need to think about when divorcing or separating:

  • Property, such as the family home
  • Savings
  • Investments
  • Personal belongings such as furniture or jewellery
  • Pensions
  • Businesses

When choosing how to split your assets, your main focus should be on achieving a fair outcome which enables both parties to maintain a reasonable standard of living.

Our experienced divorce lawyers can provide advice in relation to every aspect of your finances and help you negotiate a realistic division of property and assets which guarantees you a safe and secure future.

We have extensive experience working with self-employed individuals and couples, so if your family business is part of the financial settlement negotiations, we can provide specialist advice on how to protect your livelihood.

Spousal maintenance

Spousal maintenance describes regular payments made by a person to their former-partner. If you require spousal maintenance to be able to support yourself financially, we can help you negotiate this as part of your financial settlement.

Child maintenance

When spouses divorce or separate, it is expected that both parents will continue providing financial support for their children. In many situations, the children will live primarily with one parent, with the other parent having regular contact. In these situations, the parent with whom the children do not live most of the time will make regular child maintenance payments towards the children’s everyday living costs.

Separation Agreements

If you and your partner have not yet decided whether to divorce or dissolve your civil partnership, we can help you arrange a separation agreement instead.

A separation agreement is like a financial settlement; it is a document which sets out a couple’s financial arrangements during the separation. Just like a financial settlement, the separation agreement can cover issues such as:

  • Who becomes responsible for the mortgage or rent and the bills.
  • Who becomes responsible for the household’s debts, such as overdrafts.
  • Whether the house is to be sold.
  • Whether one spouse is responsible for child maintenance and in what amount.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Our family lawyers are skilled at helping divorcing and separating couples come to agreements amicably and cooperatively. We specialise in Alternative Dispute Resolution methods such as family mediation and collaborative law, so you and your former partner can discuss your financial arrangements in a calm and neutral environment.

As well as encouraging teamwork, successfully using Alternative Dispute Resolution means you can avoid fighting it out in court, saving you considerable time, money, and hassle.

Family mediation

Family mediation involves you sitting down with your former partner to discuss the particulars of your divorce or dissolution under the guidance of a trained mediator.

The mediator’s role is not to provide legal advice, but to facilitate positive discussion and diffuse any tension. You and your former partner remain in control of the discussion and are free to come to any arrangement you wish. Once you come to an agreement, we can help you apply to court to formalise it in the form of a consent order.

Collaborative law

Like family mediation, collaborative law is the process of sitting down with your former partner to discuss matters such as your financial arrangements after divorce, dissolution, or separation. You may choose collaborative law over family mediation where your finances are particularly complicated and difficult to untangle.

There will be no independent third party guiding your discussion, but you and your former partner will both have a collaborative lawyer present to advise you and help you negotiate the details of your financial settlement. You can also invite other relevant professionals, such as financial advisors, if their input is needed.

Court orders

In some circumstances, a couple may find it difficult to agree on a final financial settlement. In these situations, it may be necessary to apply to court for a financial court order.

Our family lawyers have a wide range of experience with complex financial disputes on divorce or dissolution. We can support you through the litigation process with a view of achieving a positive outcome which guarantees you a safe and financially secure future.

Divorce and finances FAQs

How long does it take to work out a financial settlement?

The length of time it takes to agree a financial settlement will depend on the complexity of your finances and how successful you and your former spouse are at negotiating.

If your finances are simple and you are able to agree quickly, working out a settlement could take a matter of weeks. If you need to go to court for a financial order, the process could take 9-12 months.

Will we need to sell the house when we divorce?

It depends on your individual situation and the outcome of your discussions. Some couples choose to sell, split the money, and buy new homes; some people buy their former partner out of their share; others agree to keep the house only for a specified amount for time, for example, until the children leave school.

Will the reasons for divorce affect the financial settlement?

While behaviour such as adultery or ‘unreasonable behaviour’ is usually the driving reasons behind the divorce, it is generally not taken into account during discussions about finances unless it is so unfair that it cannot be ignored. Such behaviour could include serious financial misconduct by one of the spouses.

How do courts decide the financial settlement?

Courts use statutory criteria to decide how to divide finances fairly and what is ‘fair’ differs from couple to couple.

The starting point is a 50-50 split. However, in many situations, a more proportionate division assessed according to each spouse’s needs is fairer. Some factors the court take into account when deciding how to arrange finances are:

  • The income and earning capacity of both spouses.
  • The financial resources each spouse have or are likely to have in the future.
  • The spouses’ financial needs, requirements, and responsibilities.
  • The spouses’ ages and the length of the marriage.
  • The spouses’ standard of living before the relationship broke down.
  • Any mental or physical disability of either spouse.
  • Contributions each spouse made to the family or may make in the future.
  • The spouses’ conduct but only if it is so unreasonable it cannot be disregarded.
  • Any benefits either spouse would lose as a result of the divorce.

Why choose our family lawyers for help with finances on divorce or separation

Our experienced family lawyers understand that divorcing and separating couples often feel anxious about the future. We specialise in providing sympathetic but practical advice to help you sort out your finances on divorce, separation, or dissolution, so you can move forward with your life without having to worry.

Fiona Lee is a member of Resolution and an accredited specialist in complex financial and property matters; demonstrating our team’s devotion to harmonious and positive resolutions to family financial matters.

Graham Evans & Partners is independently regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA).

Contact our divorce lawyers today for financial help with divorce or separation

Get in touch with our family lawyers in South Wales today to arrange an initial consultation. We have offices in Swansea, Bridgend, and Port Talbot and you can contact us by calling your local branch, emailing mail@geplegal.co.uk, or by completing our enquiry form at the top of the page.