When we enter the initial meeting with a client who is starting the Divorce process, the first question we tend to hear is: “How much am I going to get?” The division of assets in Divorce can vary hugely from case to case. While the starting point will always be 50:50 in any Family Law Courtroom, there are many factors a Judge will consider when deciding how much each party receives.

What factors will be considered when deciding the division of assets in Divorce?

The Judge will base their decision on principles from legislation and case law, as well as their own discretion regarding the case at hand. If children are involved in the marriage, the Court will consider their financial needs first. They will also consider the present and future financial needs of both parties. In doing this, they will look at:

  • The age of both parties and the length of the marriage
  • Resources and earning opportunities for both parties
  • The standard of living enjoyed before the marriage broke down
  • Significant contributions by the parties made to the relationship

With the last point, many people assume that only financial contributions will be considered by the Court. This is not the case at all. A significant contribution could be staying home to raise children, taking care of the home, or acting as a carer to the spouse or a child.

Will I receive a bigger share of the Financial Settlement because I earn more?

It is not always the case that the party who contributed more financially will receive more in the Financial Settlement. In fact, in certain instances it is the party with the lower income and earning potential who will receive the larger share. This is because the Court wants to ensure that both parties housing and income needs are met. If one person earns significantly less than the other, the Court may decide they need a bigger share in order for this party to continue to have their needs met moving forward.

Will my Pension be included in the division of assets in Divorce?

Pensions are always included in the Financial Settlement in Divorce. It may be possible to ringfence contributions made prior to the marriage, but any contributions made throughout the duration of the marriage will always be seen as a marital asset.

Clients tend to be outraged to discover that they will have to share their pension. When a couple chooses to Divorce, Family Law considers the needs of both parties. If one party stayed home to raise children or couldn’t work due to disability or illness, it would be unfair for that person to leave the marriage without a pension as a result.

What is the process for deciding how our assets will be divided?

You and your ex-partner are well within your rights to decide for yourselves how you would like to divide your assets upon Divorcing. In fact, this is the ideal way to handle the division of assets if possible. It will save you both a lot of time, stress, and money if you can reach an amicable agreement. We always advise our clients to have a calm conversation with their ex in the first instance.

If it isn’t possible for you and your ex-partner to come to an agreement without legal intervention, the first step would be Mediation. Mediation is a way to sort through your dispute without the need to involve the Court. A third party person – known as a Mediator – will sit with you both in hope that you will find a resolution.

If Mediation fails, the next step would be to make an application to the Court. It will then be up to a Judge to decide how your assets will be divided.

How can I get in touch?

If you require any assistance with your Divorce, our team of Family Law Specialists are on hand to support you through the process. You can send us a message through the Contact Form on our website, or call the team directly on 0161 402 0213