Beverley features on BBC Radio Norfolk to discuss all things divorce and the cost of living crisis
January 9, 2024
Yesterday, on what is commonly known as “Divorce Day” in the UK, Beverley spoke on BBC Radio Norfolk about all things divorce and separation including the impact of the cost-of -living crisis.
Research from Legal and General found that 272,000 people (19%) have delayed their divorce due to cost –of-living pressures.
Often financial pressures in a marriage can be a reason for a divorce however, it can also keep a couple together. There has been a rise in inflation in recent years, dramatic increases in interest rates and the cost of living generally. This can mean that couples are unable to break up and go their separate ways as they simply cannot afford to buy and sell due to the new mortgage rates. People often cannot afford to run two households. The state of the economy is a big factor when thinking of separating.
However, despite the research, we have continued to see a rise in the number of divorce applications and we expect this will continue into 2024 despite the impact of the cost of living crisis.
The first working day after the New Year is often called “Divorce Day” as firms can see a spike in new enquiries after the Christmas period. This can be for a variety of reasons. Sometimes people want to get the Christmas period out of the way, others want a new start in the New Year or the holidays may have pushed the relationship to the breaking point.
If you have separated or are thinking of separating, you may well be worried about how the current economic climate may impact on your divorce. We share our thoughts on what couples should be aware of and share some tips to reduce the costs and strain.
1.Whilst you may face tough financial pressures, you also need to consider the impact on your health and wellbeing and also the wider family. It may be better long term for a couple to divorce especially if there are children and there is a high conflict home environment.
2.Get advice early on. It is important that you understand your position from both a legal and financial perspective. If you are worried about whether you can afford to separate, it may be sensible to speak to an independent financial advisor so you can explore the options. Here at bbl, we realise that you only have a certain amount of money, time and emotion. Therefore, it is important to invest in the right services at the right time. We can assist with this process and point you in the direction of other professionals if their expertise is needed.
3.Think about alternative ways of resolving your financial arrangements as a result of the divorce. It is up to you how you choose to sort out your money and property but which route you go down will impact how much your divorce will cost. For example, a lengthy court battle is likely to cost you tens of thousands of pounds. However, there are other options which are likely to be more cost effective. For example, you may want to think about mediation. Family mediation is a voluntary process whereby the mediator, an independent third party, facilitates negotiations and discussions between the couple. These discussions are confidential. The hope is that the mediator can facilitate an agreement between you regarding your dispute rather than having something imposed on you.
4.Timing is important. Often people think that the court consider your financial position at the time of the separation. This is not the case. They will look at your financial positions when you divorce, not when you separated. This means that your financial position could look very different especially if there is a long gap between the two. This can make matters more complicated.
5.There are ways of reducing your legal fees by doing some aspects yourself. For example, many people will deal with the divorce application themselves, but ask their solicitor to assist with the finances (which is often more complicated). Many firms will often also offer a reduced rate for the first consultation. Your solicitor will be able to discuss the most cost effective way to deal with matters.
At bbl we have six solicitors and fived trained mediators. If you would like any further information about the services we offer at bbl family law or bbl mediation please do get in touch by calling 01603 679050 or emailing email@example.com.
The information provided in this article is designed to provide useful information on the subject, not to provide specific legal advice
To listen to Beverley’s discussion with Kayleigh on BBC Radio Norfolk, you can listen here -22:40 minutes in.