The No-Fault Divorce – Financial and Children Matters
The Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Act 2020 came into force on 6th April 2022.
This has significantly changed the landscape for divorcing couples and has removed the requirement to evidence a period of separation or the conduct of the other party when applying to the Court for a divorce. The new law in relation divorce simply requires one or both parties to provide a statement of irretrievable breakdown of the marriage.
The introduction of the new no-fault divorce law is a welcome change for divorcing couples as it is anticipated this new procedure will represent a more conciliatory and amicable way to commence divorce proceedings.
Although there has been a significant change to the law in relation to divorce process itself, the existing law in relation to financial matters and child arrangements shall continue to apply.
Divorce does not automatically end a couple’s financial commitments to one another. As a result of a marriage, couples have various financial claims over one another, including over pensions, capital and income and these claims must therefore be dealt with upon the breakdown of a marriage.
It is necessary to deal with the financial consequences of the marriage breakdown at the same time as the divorce and there are various options available to a couple when considering how to have discussions regarding matrimonial finances.
The new divorce law has introduced a 20-week period between a divorce application being issued by the Court and the conditional order being applied for. This period of time provides couples with a “period of reflection” as well as time to sort out the financial arrangements which result as a consequence of a divorce.
When going through the breakdown of a marriage, parents will need to make important decisions about the arrangements for their children including where they will live and how they will spend their time with each parent.
Ideally, parents will come to a mutual agreement about arrangements for children though this is not always possible. If parents cannot agree on what will happen with divorce and children, it may become necessary to seek assistance from the Court.
Where parents are separated, one of them may be required to pay child maintenance to the other parent, depending upon the circumstances in any given situation, this may by agreement as to the amount of child maintenance payable or through an organisation such as the Child Maintenance Service.
If you are going through a divorce or you are considering starting divorce proceedings, it would be beneficial for you to seek legal advice at the earliest opportunity to discuss the divorce process, financial matters and any concerns you have relating to children. At Gardner Croft, we can provide you with guidance and advice which will suit your individual circumstances. We will listen to you, we will advise you and we will guide you through the process.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are not designed to constitute legal advice and is for information only.