Financial Settlements and property disputes on Divorce
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eBooks to download on divorce
FAQs on financial settlements
We own our house jointly. Is there anything I should be considering doing if our relationship has broken down?
Most married couples will own their matrimonial home in equal shares as joint tenants. This means that on the death of the first joint tenant their share will pass automatically to the other joint tenant, irrespective of any will or other intention. This may well be not what you would wish, if your relationship has broken down. The answer is to sever the joint tenancy, so that you hold the home as beneficial joint tenants. You may then leave your share in the property to whoever you wish by making a will.
Do we have to attend mediation before we divorce as I think it would be a waste of time?
You cannot be made to attend mediation, although in most cases you will be required to attend a MIAM or mediation information and assessment meeting. At the meeting you will be given full information about the possible advantages of mediation and will be able to discuss your doubts and reservations with a trained mediator. You should not close your mind to the possibilities of reaching an agreement over all matters through mediation.
What do I need to think about if our relationship is over and it looks like we are going to split up?
Before deciding finally that your relationship is over, you should discuss this with family and friends and consider very carefully what life will be like as a single person. It may not be as rosy as you’d think, especially as a single parent. If having taken your time and thought things through carefully your decision is final, it will be time to tell your partner and children. How you tell particularly the children is most important. You will need to explain the practical arrangements to the children and whenever possible this should be done together by both parents.
What is collaborative law?
This is an alternative to mediation or applying to the court to decide family issues. You and your partner together with each of your lawyers will meet and try to hammer out an agreement. It is fully explained in our article which you can read here.