Divorce economy

Divorce in a tough economy

16/01/2024

January is generally thought of as the busiest month for family lawyers. Often clients have endured Christmas and then make a resolution to seek advice in the new year once the festive season is over. Here at Pinney Talfourd we are busy seeing new clients who need advice on obtaining a divorce and financial settlement.

Financial difficulties

With rising interest rates, rising inflation and increases in the cost of living throughout the UK, many couples are delaying their divorce because they cannot afford to live as two separate households instead of one.

Whilst the division of finances between divorcing couples is important, of equal importance is the emotional and physical strain that all parties will experience in continuing a loveless or failed marriage. Careful thought must be given to the effect that decision will have on their ongoing mental health and enjoyment of life, especially when there are children involved.

The truth of the matter is there are many couples who struggle to turn one household into two irrespective of the state of the economy. Fortunately, there are often options available which will allow both parties to separate into two separate households and move on with their lives.

These options include:

  • one spouse agreeing to move out and take their share of the family home at a later date;
  • one spouse may agree to take a smaller share of the capital in exchange and preserve a pension;
  • In a ‘spousal maintenance’ case, the payment of spousal maintenance could be offset against the paying party retaining an interest in a property.

The risks in delaying the inevitable

Delaying the inevitable may well cost one of the parties dearly because the starting point in dividing the matrimonial assets is what they are worth today, not what they were worth on the day the parties considered themselves to be separated.

In most cases where separated spouses continue to cohabit together, it is in everyone’s best interests that they reach an amicable agreement on their finances and child matters. Thus, allowing all parties to settle into their new surroundings and move on from the marriage.

How Pinney Talfourd can help

If you do feel financially trapped in a marriage with no obvious way out it can be helpful to take financial and legal advice at the earliest opportunity to consider what options are available to you which you may have not considered, even during challenging economic periods such as that which exist today.

The Family department at Pinney Talfourd offer a free half-hour appointment for general legal advice to clients who are considering Divorce. For more information, please get in touch on 01708 229 444.

The above is meant to be only advice and is correct as of the time of posting. This article was written by Louise Eady, Partner and Michael Sheville, Partner in the Family team at Pinney Talfourd LLP Solicitors. The contents of this article are for the purposes of general awareness only. They do not purport to constitute legal or professional advice. Specific legal advice should be taken on each individual matter. This article is based on the law as of January 2024.

16/01/2024

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