In divorce, splitting assets is often the most technically challenging issue to sort out, as well as being one of the most critical. Getting the right divorce settlement is essential for achieving a clean break and a financially secure future, so it is no wonder this tends to be the most stressful part of getting divorced for many people.
At Lewis Denley, we are here to make your life easier. Our Family Law team can you guide you through sorting out finances on divorce with clear, sensible advice on the best approach and what you can expect, supporting you with sensitivity and empathy at this difficult time.
Our divorce financial advice service is led by Senior Associate Solicitor Marwa Hadi-Barnes, who has over 14 years’ experience helping people with their divorce finances.
Marwa has been recognised for her standout expertise in leading client guides the Legal 500 and Chambers & Partners. She is a member of family law network Resolution, an organisation that shares her commitment to removing conflict from divorce.
Based in central Horsham, our divorce financial advice lawyers help clients across Sussex, Surrey and beyond, including in Rudgwick, Billingshurst, Crawley, Ewhurst, Gatwick, Copthorne, Pulborough, Dorking, Reigate, Godalming, Guildford, Midhurst and Brighton
Our divorce financial advice pricing is clear and transparent.
We take pride in being approachable, helpful and here for our community.
We offer a free 30-minute consultation with Marwa Hadi-Barnes to discuss your divorce finances and how we can help.
Our expertise with divorce finances
Our divorce financial advice solicitors can advise on all the issues you need to consider when splitting finances in divorce, including:
- Divorce and the family home
- Personal savings and divorce
- Investments and divorce
- Divorce and pensions
- Cars and other vehicles and divorce
- Inheritance and divorce
- Second homes, holiday homes and investment properties and divorce
- Divorce and business assets
- International assets and divorce
- Family trusts and divorce
How we can help you achieve a divorce financial settlement
Agreeing a divorce settlement voluntarily
In many cases, it is possible to split finances in divorce without the need for contentious court proceedings. There are various ways to approach this, including private negotiation and mediation, which involves the divorcing couple working with a trained neutral mediator to agree a settlement.
At Lewis Denley, our divorce financial settlement solicitors can assist with matters including:
- Advice on your financial rights during divorce
- Representing you during private divorce settlement negotiations
- Helping you to prepare for divorce mediation
- Advice on the details of a divorce financial settlement achieved through mediation
- Applying to a court for a Consent Order to make a voluntary divorce settlement legally binding
Applying to a court for a Financial Order
Where an amicable settlement cannot be agreed or such an approach is not suitable, you may need to apply to a family court for a Financial Order to decide how your finances should be divided.
Our divorce financial advice lawyers can assist with:
- Applying for a Financial Order
- Preparing your case for your court hearing
- Securing expert family court representation
- Advising you on the details of a Financial Order issued by a court, including your obligations under the Order and your right of appeal
Divorce finances FAQs
What am I entitled to in a divorce settlement?
When deciding how to divide the finances, the Court’s first consideration is the welfare of any children involved. The Court will look to achieve a fair outcome. Generally, all of your and your spouse’s assets will be pooled and a 50/50 split should be departed from only if there is a good reason for doing so.
Real world divorce settlements will look at factors including:
- What financial contribution each party made to the marriage
- What non-financial contribution each party made to the marriage e.g. raising children
- How long the marriage lasted
- The parties’ income and earning capacity
The priority is to ensure the financial needs of each party and any children are met.
Ultimately, the goal is to achieve a fair division of finances that allows both parties to move on with financial security.
How long does it take to get a divorce settlement?
This will entirely depend on the circumstances. If your finances are relatively straightforward and you are able to agree a voluntary divorce settlement, then it is usually possible to sort your finances out in a matter of months.
However, if there are more complex financial matters to resolve, or you need to apply to a family court for a Financial Order, then it can take longer.
Our divorce financial settlement solicitors understand how important it is for people to be able to get their finances sorted out as quickly as possible during divorce. As such, we will do everything we can to expediate the process, working proactively to avoid any unnecessary delays.
How is a house divided in a divorce?
Whether you own your home together or one of you owns it outright, it will still be treated as a marital asset for the purposes of your divorce settlement. Exactly how the family home is dealt with in a divorce settlement will depend on the circumstances, but common outcomes include:
- One party keeps the house and ‘buys out’ the other, either immediately or at a later date
- One party keeps the house and the other party takes a larger share of other assets (such as savings or pensions) instead
- The house is sold with the proceeds split between the parties
Who gets the house in a divorce with children?
There are no hard and fast rules, but the priority is to find a solution that enables the children to be appropriately housed. If one parent will be acting as the primary carer, this may mean they will stay living in the family home with the children.
Do I have to pay child maintenance if my ex remarries?
Yes, if your former spouse remarries this has no effect on your obligation to financially support your children.
How much of my spouse’s pension am I entitled to when we divorce?
Pension assets are treated are usually considered matrimonial assets, so if your spouse has a larger pension than you, you may be entitled to some share of their pension. Exactly how much you are entitled to will depend on the situation, but there are three main ways of dealing with pensions in divorce:
Pension offsetting – Where you surrender any right to your spouse’s pension in exchange for receiving other assets of equivalent value as part of your divorce settlement.
Pension sharing – Where a percentage of your spouse’s pension pot is placed into a separate pension scheme for your sole benefit, giving you your own pension income and a clean break from your spouse’s pension. This can be agreed voluntarily or ordered by a court with a Pension Sharing Order.
Pension earmarking – Where it is agreed or ordered by a court that you will receive a certain percentage of your spouse’s pension income on an ongoing basis. This option is rarely used.
How can I protect my pension in a divorce?
It is common for people to worry about losing a share of their pension as a result of a divorce settlement. However, it is possible to avoid this if you take the right approach.
As explained in the answer to the previous question, if you wish to preserve the value of your pension, the normal approach is to offer to allow your spouse to take a greater share of other assets, such as your family home, in exchange for giving up any claim to your pension.
Our divorce financial advice fees
The legal costs involved in dealing with finances on divorce can be a concern, especially where your financial situation is uncertain. We are committed to transparency with our family law pricing, so will always be upfront about the costs involved, including our fees and any third-party costs.
We will be happy to discuss all the likely costs involved once we have a clearer picture of your requirements, which is something we can cover during your free initial consultation.
Book a free 30-minute consultation with our divorce financial advice specialist
We want to make splitting finances in divorce as easy as possible. If you have any questions about how we can help you navigate this challenging time, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
Our specialist divorce financial advice solicitor will be happy to offer a free 30-minute consultation over the phone or via videoconference.
To arrange your free 30-minute consultation, please contact Marwa Hadi-Barnes today.