Divorce Financial Settlements

Our divorce lawyers are highly experienced in achieving fair financial settlements as part of the divorce and separation process, with particular expertise in dealing with high-value settlements and complex assets. We can also advise on the application of pre or post nuptial agreements during divorce.

Wherever possible, we will seek to agree a settlement away from the Court. We also have extensive experience in conducting Financial Remedy proceedings through the Court, and this allows us to reach the best available financial settlement for you, no matter what approach is required.

We can help with all financial settlement matters, including:

Get in touch with our divorce settlement solicitors in Plymouth, Plympton or Plymstock

For advice on all aspects of divorce financial settlements, please get in touch with our specialist solicitors today. We have local legal offices in Plymouth, Plympton and Plymstock for your convenience.

You can call us on 01752 648870 or complete the enquiry form on our contact page.

How we can help with financial settlements

Negotiated settlements (where we assist you to agree the division of assets)

We will meet with you at the beginning of your case to explore ways to try to settle your matter and we can negotiate on your behalf with your spouse or their solicitor. We can discuss your options which can include negotiations between solicitors, mediation, and collaborative law before deciding whether to make an application to Court.

If settlement can be reached, this is a much more cost-effective way of resolving matters. However, there are some circumstances in which settlement cannot be achieved and, if this is the case, we will advise and support you throughout each step.

Financial Orders (where a court decides the division of assets)

Unfortunately, it is not always possible for separating couples to reach agreement about how to divide their assets.

One of the most difficult aspects of a divorce is resolving the ownership of the family home, dividing savings and pensions, and the payment of maintenance. This is often the most complicated part of the divorce process.

Where agreement cannot be reached, the Court has wide powers to make orders about the family assets including maintenance, property, lump sums and pension sharing orders.

Our experts can advise on your financial rights in divorce, so you have a clear idea what you can expect to achieve from a Court-ordered division of finances. We can then support you through the Court process, making sure your case is as strong as possible, so you can get the fairest outcome available.

Clean Break Orders (to prevent future financial claims by a former spouse)

Even where there is no property or finances to resolve, or you have already agreed how to divide your assets, you still need to legally cut the financial link between you and your former spouse. This prevents the risk of a future financial claim against your assets, which can be made at any time after your divorce unless you have taken steps to prevent this with a Clean Break Order

Divorce or dissolution proceedings will bring your marriage or civil partnership to an end but will not resolve your financial claims against each other. Future potential financial claims remain open unless they are formally dismissed by the Court.

If you wish to prevent your husband or wife from having financial claims against you in the future, we recommend that you obtain a Clean Break Order. This legally ends the financial relationship between you and your former spouse, meaning they would have no right to bring a financial claim against your assets in future.

A member of our specialist team can advise you of the implications of a Clean Break Order and the procedure to obtain one. We can prepare an application for a Clean Break Consent Order and summary of your finances, ask your husband or wife to complete their financial summary and file the documents with the Court.

Frequently asked questions about divorce financial settlements

What am I entitled to in a divorce settlement?

Each spouse’s entitlements in a divorce settlement will entirely depend on the unique circumstances of the case.

If a Court is required to decide the division of assets, they will look at various factors, including:

  • The available assets
  • The financial circumstances of each spouse
  • The needs of each spouse and any children
  • The standard of living enjoyed by the family before the separation
  • The length of the marriage
  • What contribution each spouse made to the marriage (both financial and non-financial)

When should I agree to a financial settlement?

An order of the Court can only be made once your divorce reaches the Conditional Order stage and the terms of an order can only take effect following the granting of the Final Order in your divorce.

You should always have the terms of any settlement reviewed by an expert before signing to ensure that the terms are fair.

What is a Consent Order?

An order can be made following negotiations between solicitors or at Court by agreement and is known as a “Consent Order”. This makes the terms of any negotiated settlement legally binding.

How does financial disclosure work in divorce?

We will help you to deal with your financial disclosure on a voluntary basis which is often provided on the standard Court form called a Form E. The Form E is a financial statement which sets out all of your relevant financial information. If it is not possible to agree to exchange voluntary disclosure or if negotiations do not lead to an agreed settlement, then your matter is likely to have to proceed through the Court.

How do Court proceedings for the division of finances in divorce work?

If agreement cannot be reached an order can be made by the Court after a contested hearing. The process involves several stages.

Application for financial remedy

Court proceedings are started by either party by making an application for Financial Remedy with the Court. This is an application asking the Court to consider both yours and your husband/wife’s or Civil Partner’s financial positions. Filing the application starts off a standard Court process.

First Directions Appointment (FDA)

After 16 weeks, a First Directions Appointment (FDA) should be listed. Prior to the first hearing, there is provision of the filing and exchange of the court financial disclosure Form E and there is also provision for the filing of additional supporting documentation which we can advise you upon and prepare on your behalf.

At the First Directions Appointment, the Court will give directions about the progression of your case, which may involve obtaining experts’ reports, such as a Surveyor to value the family home, or for an Actuary to report upon division of pension funds. It is likely that each party will have asked questions about the other’s Form E and the court will direct for responses to those questionnaires to be filed.

Financial Dispute Resolution (FDR) hearing

The Court will list the application for a further hearing known as a ‘Financial Dispute Resolution’ (FDR) hearing. This hearing is listed with the intention of being able to settle matters in the hope of avoiding a final hearing, when the Judge will have to decide the outcome.

At the Financial Dispute Resolution hearing, both parties summarise the most important aspects of their case to the Judge and set out their offers of settlement. The Judge should then give a view about settlement and will encourage the parties to enter into further negotiations at court.

Settlement negotiations

Settlement is encouraged throughout this Court process. If agreement can be reached, a Consent Order can be drawn up and filed at any time during the Court proceedings.

Judge’s decision

If settlement cannot be achieved, the application will be determined by the Judge at a final hearing. Both parties will give evidence at this hearing and the Judge will make a decision about how the assets are to be divided between the parties.

Why work with Wolferstans for your divorce settlement?

Wolferstans Family Law team offer an exceptional service you can trust and this is reflected in many ways including:

  • Our team includes over 20 members, offering both breadth and depth of expertise
  • We regularly act for clients in both amicable and contentious divorce financial matters, meaning we can perfectly tailor our approach to your situation
  • We have extensive experience with complex, high value divorce cases, so can offer effective support for clients of all levels
  • The team includes trained collaborative lawyers, allowing us to offer this very effective method of alternative dispute resolution for divorce finances
  • Many of the team are members of the UK’s leading family law network, Resolution
  • We have expertise across the full range of family law matters, so can provide a complete service, including for issues such as arrangements for children

Get in touch with our divorce settlement solicitors in Plymouth, Plympton or Plymstock

For advice on all aspects of divorce financial settlements, please get in touch with our specialist solicitors today. We have local legal offices in Plymouth, Plympton and Plymstock for your convenience.

You can call us on 01752 648870 or complete the enquiry form on our contact page.

Get in Touch