Dividing assets on divorce

Dividing assets on divorceWhen couples get divorced, it is often assumed that marital assets get divided in half.

This sound like a fair approach, after all.

A fifty-fifty split for two former partners would be a sensible starting point for any financial settlement.

In reality, things are usually a lot more complicated.

A recent story in The Independent reported that a judge awarded 90% of marital assets to the wife.

According to the article:

The judge felt becoming a stay-at-home mum had left Jane Morris with a ‘low earning capacity’ and ‘rusty skills’, having spent her time raising three children during their 25-year marriage, leaving a successful career in recruitment to do so.

So rather than simply consider the total value of financial assets and needs of each partner, the judge also took earning capacity into account.

This divorce case does not change the general principle that assets accumulated during a marriage will be divided equally between partners in case of divorce, as a starting point for a financial settlement.

It does serve as a reminder that the courts will also consider the needs of any children from the relationship, with an unequal split of assets awarded, especially where one partner has greater future earnings capacity.

One of our roles as Financial Planners is to work with divorcing couples and help them understand their future financial positions.

We can work impartially with both partners, sometimes acting as a ‘single joint expert’ for the courts, rather than each party instructing their own experts.

Once a Financial Order has been granted, we will typically act for one partner to advise on their financial planning, with a particular focus on retirement planning and dealing with marital pension assets.

We have a great deal of experience with the implementation of pension sharing orders and building financial plans for women who are recently divorced, to provide peace of mind about the future.

Dividing assets on divorce is rarely as simple as it should be.

With expert and independent financial advice, you can make sure that the financial aspects of divorce do not leave you with uncertainty or worry.


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