Finances after divorce
Separating your money when a marriage is over
Dealing with the financial fallout of a divorce can be daunting. There are so many difficult questions to resolve, and its easy for this to spiral into arguments.
Questions that need answers
Separating means thinking about your future. Where will you live? Can you stay in the family home? What will your income be? Are you entitled to a share of your ex’s pension? Do you have to pay maintenance, or will there be a “clean break”? How do you value the family business? Will the court force the sale of the family business? What about the holiday home, or overseas assets?
These are common concerns that we will help you address.
Inheritance and money brought to a relationship
Any settlement needs to consider financial needs. Beyond that, assets might be shared. What about inheritances? Should you get credit for the money you have at the start of the relationship? These are issues which can be taken into account. The court distinguishes between matrimonial assets and non-matrimonial assets. We can give you clear advice about how this will be applied to your situation.
We have a family business
Many of our clients have their own businesses, maybe a partnership or limited company. We can help you decide how the business should be dealt with, including how to value it. We can look at the impact on the business if one of you has to leave, and the options for the person who leaves. How will that affect the business in terms of liquidity? What are the tax consequences? Can you continue to work together after the divorce? This is unusual but we do not rule anything out.
Pensions and retirement
The court has the power to make pension sharing orders. There is guidance in the Pension Advisory Group report. Pensions can be your most valuable asset, so it is important they are considered properly. You need expert advice from someone familiar with different types of pension schemes. Some standard valuations are usually reliable (defined contribution schemes), but the cash equivalent valuation for defined benefit schemes are notoriously unreliable. Also there can be different types of scheme, within the same organisation (such as the NHS 2008 scheme and the NHS 2015 scheme, or the Armed Forces 2005 and 2015 schemes, and CARE schemes).
We can help you consider:
- How do we value the pension? Is the cash equivalent value fair and accurate? What else do we need and what else is available.
- What will it cost to deal with pensions.
- Do we need to involve an actuary or pension expert?
- How can we compare different types of schemes, such as an Army pension to a private pension?
- What about pension flexibility and the rules allowing early drawdowns. Is it fair to offset a pension claim (so one person keeps their pension and the other person receives the house).
We deal with divorces where family trusts are involved. You or your spouse maybe the beneficiary of a trust, and most commonly we see discretionary trusts. The court looks at the reality of how the trust has operated in the past. The court has the power to vary the terms of some trusts, and make orders which bind the trustees.
Overseas Assets and International Divorce
We can help you deal with houses or properties overseas, or to make financial claims in England if you have divorced abroad.
Different countries have different divorce systems. We are seeing more and more cases with an international element. Find out how we can help you today.