Top tips when contemplating divorce

Posted on: April 16th, 2015

We understand that taking the step to see a family solicitor can be upsetting and that it is often difficult to take in all of the information and advice provided.  If you are contemplating a divorce, here are some basic things you may like to think about. 

Discuss with your spouse the arrangements for any children of the family

The court does not get involved in the arrangements for the children on relationship breakdown unless either parent makes an application to the court. The arrangements for the children will be different for every family. A flexible approach should be taken between parents to try and agree between themselves what suits the family and what is in the best interests of the children.

Resolve your financial claims

Simply getting a divorce will not dismiss the relevant financial claims existing between you. To properly record any agreement reached between you and to dismiss ongoing claims against each other you must enter into a financial consent order and submit this to the court for approval within divorce proceedings.

Severe the joint tenancy on any jointly owned property

Most married couples hold their interests in the family home as joint tenants, which means that if one of them were to die the other would automatically inherit their share of the property. If you are contemplating divorce you might like to sever the joint tenancy on the property so that in the event of your death your 50% share would pass in accordance to your Will and not automatically to your spouse.

Update your Will

Certainly if you are severing the joint tenancy on a property but in any case you should think about whether you want to revise your existing Will or if you do not have a Will think about making one in contemplation of divorce.

Think about any joint savings/debts

If you have savings accounts or debts in joint names you should seek advice about whether it might be prudent to freeze the accounts until the financial issues have been resolved between you so that it is not possible for one of you to withdraw all savings or incur more debt on a joint credit card. 6. Consider any capital gains tax implications.

If you have other properties that are not your primary residence there may be capital gains tax arising from any sale or transfer of that property. Transfers between spouses during the tax year of separation are exempt from capital gains tax and you may need some financial advice about how you can minimize capital gains tax.

To discuss these points in detail please contact a member of our family team to make an appointment.