Believe it or not, January is considered divorce season among solicitors and lawyers. There is even a phenomenon known as ‘Divorce Day’, which lies on the first working day after New Year’s Day. There are several reason for this – for example couples may wish to give their families a good Christmas before telling them the news, or they are looking ahead to the New Year as an opportunity for a fresh start for them all.
The statistics support this idea of Divorce Day, or at least the idea of divorce season. For in 2016, UK divorce lawyers, ‘helped 1.8 million couples who were considering splitting up during the holiday season’ and is has been shown that while, ’42 per cent of marriages in the UK end in divorce, this is the most common time of year for it’.
When going through a divorce, one of the most pressing issues after deciding on children arrangements is the division of finances. In fact money matters can be so complicated, the time taken to sort out the finer details of divorce, including financial settlements appears to be growing. It is estimated that it can now take on average 14.5 months to get the details nailed down, compared to only 11.5 months in 2014.
Managing Your Assets – Some Broad Guidelines
The government website www.gov.uk offers some broad guidelines on what you should think about when deciding how to manage your money and other valuables during a divorce. The advice includes these notes below:
3.If you have problems agreeing how to divide your assets, then the courts can be a suitable avenue for help. Generally, prior to applying to court for assistance, it must be demonstrated that mediation is not appropriate and cannot work. However, there are certain cases where this proof is not necessary, such as when the relationship has been abusive or when social services have been involved.
Above all, when dividing up money and belongings it is important to be honest, among other things you both will need to consider:
Divorce, Money and Children
Divorce with children is more complicated than if you have no children. Below is listed just a few of the extra considerations that impact financial discussions between a couple with a family.
Child maintenance must be paid to whichever parent is looking after the children and if the childcare is shared, maintenance payments will be reduced accordingly. What you pay depends on your earnings for children up to the age of 16 or aged 20 if the child is in full-time education up to finishing their A-levels. There is no legal obligation to fund your child through university.
The Family Home
During divorce negotiations, a priority is to ensure that any children have somewhere to live. So, it is frequently the case that the house cannot be sold until the children’s education is completed. This means that it could take years before the equity from the family home can be released and shared.
You may need to consider claiming state benefits in place of any income you received from your partner, for example you may be eligible for Universal Tax Credit.
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