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What are the Advantages of a Separation Agreement?

What are the Advantages of a Separation Agreement?

Getting a divorce isn’t always the best solution for couples and, in some cases, isn’t possible. A Separation Agreement is an alternative that allows you and your spouse to split your assets and go your separate ways, while still being married. But what are the advantages to drafting a separation agreement and why should you opt for one over a divorce? A divorce can be a stressful time, even when it’s amicable. Couples face the task of fairly dividing any matrimonial assets they’ve accumulated during their time together, such as the family home, joint bank accounts and pensions. Needless to say, if one party doesn’t agree on how these things should be split, it can make the process even more time-consuming, costly and arduous. A separation agreement may be the solution. In this blog post, we look at what a separation agreement is, what its benefits are and in what situations opting for one might make more sense than getting a divorce. What Is a Separation Agreement? A separation agreement is a document that outlines you and your spouse’s obligations to each other during your separation. In this case, a legal separation means you and your partner are separated in the eyes of the law, rather than simply splitting up and still having legal obligations to each other as husband and wife. Drawing up a separation agreement offers you a degree of protection as, while they aren’t legally binding, they can be persuasive in court, should any disputes ever arise of finances, children or during actual divorce proceedings in the future. It’s really down to the couple which obligations...
What Are My Rights to Property after Separation?

What Are My Rights to Property after Separation?

Separation — whether you opt for a separation agreement or a divorce — can be an emotional time. On top of this, couples need to decide how to split their assets, including money and the marital home. But what are your rights to property after a separation? Deciding who gets the marital home can be difficult to agree on, especially if there are children involved or your name isn’t on the mortgage or rent payments. The matter of rights to property is equally as complicated if a couple isn’t married — if you’ve been in a relationship and lived with your partner for several years, contributing to bills and making payments, do you have any rights to the home when you split? This blog post delves into everything you need to know about your rights to property after separation. Rights to Property after Separation: When You’re Married and Getting a Divorce The benefit of getting married is that, in the event of a divorce or separation, you are entitled to a share of the property. Marriage entitles both parties to certain assets and many couples acquire several joint assets over the lifetime of a relationship. This includes the marital home, but also extends to joint bank accounts and pension contributions. The crucial point regarding property is that both parties do not have to legally own it to have a legal right to the property after separation. If, for example, your spouse’s name is on the mortgage and you simply contribute to bills, you still possess rights in the eyes of the law. In this case, you can register your...
A Family Lawyer’s Guide to Life after Divorce

A Family Lawyer’s Guide to Life after Divorce

Have you recently got divorced? You’re probably feeling a whole host of emotions — sadness, confusion, maybe even a tinge of relief — but you don’t have to feel lost and wonder what’s next. We look at life after divorce and what you can expect as you begin the next chapter of your life. Getting a divorce is probably one of the most challenging and stressful experiences you’ll ever go through. From the messy lead-up to the divorce, where you watch as your marriage gradually breaks down, to the sometimes costly and time-consuming process of actually getting the divorce, and adjusting to life as a divorcee, it’s no surprise that it’s a difficult time. The future can look sad and bleak, especially considering that, at one point, you probably envisioned growing old with your then significant other. But life does go on. Getting a divorce can be a time of huge transformation and give you the much-needed “me-time” to let go of the past and focus on a more positive future. In this post, we’ll show you exactly what you can expect from life after divorce. Looking after Yourself Arranging how you and your ex will look after your children, splitting your belongings and dividing joint assets aside, the biggest impact of divorce on those dealing with it is emotional. It’s crucial to look after yourself. Accept the Emotions While we all hear how “as one door closes, another opens”, that doesn’t offer a huge amount of comfort on a lonely night. The end of a relationship involves a grieving process before you can begin to heal. Life after...
Can You Get a Divorce without Consent?

Can You Get a Divorce without Consent?

Not all break-ups are amicable. If your marriage has broken down and you’re looking to get a divorce, do you necessarily need consent from your partner? We answer this question. Divorce cannot only be a time-consuming and costly process, but it can be incredibly stressful too. A divorce is the closing of a significant chapter of your life and it might be one that you want over as quickly as possible so that you can move on with your life. But if you’re not on good terms with your partner or, for whatever reason, your partner won’t sign the papers, can you get a divorce without consent? In this blog post, we look at what you can do. The Grounds for Divorce Before we look at divorce without consent, we first need to look at the grounds for divorce. In England and Wales, there is just one basic ground for divorce: that the marriage has irretrievably broken down. When issuing a divorce against your spouse, you need to prove one of five facts: Adultery Unreasonable behaviour Desertion Two years separation with consent Five years separation without consent Out of these five instances, only one of them actually requires consent and the clue is in its name — two years separation with consent. Contrary to what you might think, you do not actually need consent from your spouse to divorce if you’re relying on any one of the other four facts. The Process of Getting a Divorce without Consent The process of getting divorced is largely administrative. After deciding the grounds on which you want the divorce, you’ll need to...
Who Gets the House in a Divorce?

Who Gets the House in a Divorce?

For happily married couples, a home is full of memories and good times, and is a place to raise a family. But when a marriage breaks down, the family home becomes an asset for the taking and can be a catalyst for hostility. So who gets the house in a divorce? Over the course of a marriage, a couple will accumulate a range of shared funds, assets and property. Although this may be beneficial at the time, if a relationship breaks down and results in divorce, dividing marital assets can prove to be extremely difficult. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to deciding who gets the house in a divorce. If one party had legal ownership prior to the relationship or if children are involved, this may heavily influence the court’s decision. In this post we’ll discuss the role of the marital home during a divorce and what the court will take into account to establish which party will receive the house (and any other property). What Happens to the House in a Divorce? Without a doubt, a divorce is one of the most stressful and emotionally-charged situations a person can experience. It’s only natural for someone in the midst of it to want the experience to be over as soon as possible. While you may be able to divide your finances equally and go your separate ways with a ‘clean break order’, establishing who gets the family home is often the factor that causes the most problems. Unfortunately, there’s not a simple answer or standard procedure when it comes to the ownership of the family home...
How Soon Can I Divorce After Separation?

How Soon Can I Divorce After Separation?

Legally separating from your partner is an option that many individuals aren’t familiar with. When the end goal is a divorce — is there any point? We look at separation and how it can actually speed up the process of a divorce, leaving you paying less and allowing you to move on with your life. If you’ve been living apart from your ex-partner for some time and have been left asking yourself “how soon can I divorce after separation?”, you’re in the right place. Unfortunately, the answer isn’t always clear. In this post, we talk you through the difference between separation and legal separation, and how having a Separation Agreement in place can actually help you get divorced more quickly and easily later on. Separation and Legal Separation: Is There a Difference? Before we delve into separation agreements and the process of divorce, it’s important to first understand the difference between separation and legal separation. Any individual might separate from their spouse — if you and your ex have mutually agreed that you are no longer a couple, you’ll probably inform your friends and family that you’re now “separated”. If you remain on good terms with your spouse, you’ve likely already decided arrangements between you without involving a solicitor. Consider legal separation as a step between mutual separation and a legally binding divorce. Getting a legal separation isn’t necessary, but it does allow you to agree on issues that could cause a dispute if you do get divorced later down the line, including children, assets or finances. Whether you’re only separating on a trial basis or simply want to...
What Is the Difference Between Separation and Divorce?

What Is the Difference Between Separation and Divorce?

When your relationship with your spouse turns sour, you have two options. Many people are aware of the option to divorce, but do not know that separation is a choice. But what is legal separation and how does it differ to a divorce? When a marriage ends, many couples opt for divorce. A divorce (and the financial arrangements) completely breaks any legal ties between you and your ex-partner — your assets, both financial and personal, are completely split — allowing you both to move on with your lives. However, there’s another option many couples aren’t aware of: separation. But what exactly is the difference between separation and divorce? In this post, we delve into the advantages of each and why you might prefer to opt for one over the other. What Does Separation Mean? When you realise you don’t want to be in a relationship with your spouse any longer and you’re contemplating filing for divorce, it’s likely that you’ll first separate on a trial basis to give each other space to evaluate the situation. It’s difficult to do that when you’re still living as a married couple, where the problems that have caused you to consider getting a divorce are still present. However, during an agreed separation, things can get complicated, especially when children or finances are involved. A legal separation allows you to draft an agreement — called a Separation Agreement — that sets out you and your partner’s right and responsibilities while you are living apart. Despite not living together, you are still legally married. However, if you are planning to one day get a divorce,...
Why Clean Break Orders Are the Best Way to Resolve a Divorce

Why Clean Break Orders Are the Best Way to Resolve a Divorce

There are many aspects of divorce that make it a challenging experience, but one that causes the most upheaval is the dividing of finances and assets. Clean break orders are a way for a divorcing couple to split their marital assets fairly and part ways for good, offering a simpler and more peaceful solution. During a marriage, a couple will accumulate multiple shared bank accounts, possessions, and property. While at the time this may make life a lot easier, enabling you to afford more with two incomes and benefit from tax savings, if one day you end up getting divorced, things can get really messy. When it comes to divorce and money, hostility and court battles are often the order of the day. Both of these should be avoided at all costs. In this post, we’ll discuss the benefits of “clean break orders” and explain why they are the best way for a couple to resolve their divorce quickly and fairly. It Allows You to Completely Cut Ties With Your Ex Clean break orders are a settlement that completely cut your financial ties with your spouse, once either agreed or enforced by a court. This could take the form of splitting any shared funds and selling the family home, with each party receiving a proportion. If you want to cut ties with your former spouse in every way possible, a clean break order is your best option. Assuming no children are involved, you’ll no longer have to see or contact them ever again — if that’s what you want. You’ll Avoid Court Hearings Couples who can agree on the...
Am I Entitled to Spousal Maintenance? Important Things to Know

Am I Entitled to Spousal Maintenance? Important Things to Know

A divorce is, without a doubt, one of the most difficult things a person can endure. While most would be quick to assume that the emotional side of things causes the most trauma, it’s often finances that cause the most amount of stress. Spousal maintenance is a way for people to remain financially stable even after their marriage has ended. Money is not only the number one reason for marriages ending, but it also causes an immense amount of unrest both during and after divorce. The dividing of assets can have a serious impact on your financial stability moving forward. If you’re someone who will find it difficult to support yourself after a divorce, you may be entitled to spousal maintenance. In this post, we’ll take a look at spousal maintenance, paying close attention to what makes you eligible to get it, as well as other reasons that you may need to one. A Clean Break When a marriage ends, all of the shared assets such as money and property need to be divided. At this point, many couples opt for a “clean break”. This is where any financial ties between yourself and your partner are ended so that you can both move on with your own lives without being affected by the other in regards to finances. If you do decide to take the clean break route to settle your divorce and want to ensure that your ex-partner cannot make financial claims against you later, you should ask your family lawyer to draft a court order reflecting the agreement reached between both parties.  If you are concerned about...
What are the Grounds for Divorce in the UK?

What are the Grounds for Divorce in the UK?

A marriage is much more than the union of a loving couple; it’s a legally-binding contract. Therefore, the end of a marriage is more complicated than a breakup as it’s a legal process. The grounds to get a divorce are a specific list of rules and scenarios that much be achieved before you will be able to end your marriage. Although the divorce rate in the UK is lower than it has been since the peak of 2003, it’s safe to say that there’s still a lot of people untying the knot. Every divorce is different. Some are relatively hassle-free and quick, whereas others require multiple court hearings to come to a conclusive end. But before the divorce proceedings can even begin, the law states that a couple needs to fit specific criteria. In this post, we’ll take a look at the grounds for divorce in the UK to give you a clear idea of whether you’re able to apply or not. To successfully apply, you will need to prove that your marriage has broken down. To do so you will need to present evidence that one of the following instances has occurred. Grounds for Divorce in the UK There is only one ground for divorce- that the marriage has irretrievably broken down. This must be evidenced by one of the following facts: Adultery: The UK government recognises adultery in regards to marriage and divorce as having sex with someone of the opposite sex. So, if you can prove that your partner has been unfaithful, you have a valid reason to file for divorce. It should be noted that...