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Separation and Divorce

What to do when relationships end

Relationship breakdown can be an unsettling and stressful time.

You may or may not feel ready to get divorced or dissolve your civil partnership and are likely to be concerned about resolving financial issues.

If you and your family have close connections to more than one country then this can cause additional problems at the time of relationship breakdown.

You can find out more below about

  • The divorce and civil partnership dissolution process
  • Issues relating to foreign marriages and divorces
  • What to do where one or more countries (jurisdictions) may be able to deal with your divorce, and the potential consequences of that
 

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Divorce read more

Although obtaining a divorce can be straightforward, issues can arise over practical issues such as where to live and the arrangements for children and financial matters. And it becomes more complex if you have connections to more than one country.

Jurisdiction Choice read more

When your relationship breaks down you maybe able to bring a divorce in more than one country. It is important to identify this at an early stage because financial and other outcomes vary hugely from one country to another.

Civil Partnership read more

We can guide you through the dissolution process, help resolve any issues and identify if you can apply to dissolve your civil partnership in more than one country and, if so, which one may give you the best outcome.

Foreign Marriages and Divorce read more

If you were married or divorced abroad it is important for you to know whether that act will be recognised in England because your marital status can affect a wide range of things from tax to the legitimacy of children.

Guidance

Spousal Maintenance or Alimony Calculator

Prepared by iFLG based on the law to help individuals and couples towards reaching a settlement.

Gender duress in marital agreements: an Australian case study

Marital agreements are not yet part of English cultural life. But undoubtedly family lawyers are now being increasingly asked to draft them. For many of us, our continued anxiety and worry is the pressure put on the financially weaker party, often although not always the wife, to enter into an agreement which is less good than relying on the law. Sometimes it can be very disadvantageous.

The final decree of divorce: Timing is absolutely everything

by Emma Nash

Q: Why does the timing matter of the application for the final decree of divorce?

A: Because it brings the marriage to an end.

Pension sharing in England after a foreign financial settlement

by David Hodson OBE

What is the situation? 

A couple on relationship breakdown abroad reach a financial settlement which involves sharing a pension based in England and Wales, sometimes based in the UK.  It may be pursuant to a foreign court order or a binding financial agreement.

What is the attitude of English pension companies?

DB v PB: Unfair marital agreements, chaos of EU law and unusual routes to fairness

David Hodson OBE 

A Guide to the taxation of Spouses on Marriage, and on Separation and Divorce 2017/18

By David Hodson OBE 

Introduction 

1.1 Taxation of spouses

One definition of marriage is the coming together of a man and a woman as "one flesh".  For many years Parliament has recognised this special united relationship (and the family unit created as a result) by giving it favourable tax treatment.  During marriage, spouses should take maximum advantage of this special treatment to minimise the overall tax payable by them both.

Divorce Settlement Calculator

Prepared by iFLG based on the law to help individuals and couples towards reaching a settlement.

iGuide: Dissolution of Civil Partnerships

The procedure for the dissolution of Civil Partnerships is quite straightforward. Here is our iGuide to the process.

iGuide: Divorce Procedure in England and Wales

Divorce is usually quite straight forward, particularly when both partners agree that the marriage is over. Here's our guide to the divorce process.

iGuide: Financial Orders - Considerations for the Court

The family court has wide powers to make financial orders. Here is our iGuide setting out the types of issues that the court will take into account when making a financial order.

iGuide: Recognition of Foreign Divorce

If you were married outside of England and Wales it is important to know whether your marriage will be recognised here. This iGuide explains the requirements for a marriage to be recognised here.

iGuide: Where should I divorce?

On relationship breakdown there is potentially opportunity to divorce or dissolve your civil partnership in more than one country. This iGuide sets out some of the things that you should take into account when deciding where to divorce.

FAQ: Divorce

Frequently asked questions ­about Divorce

FAQ: Forum Choice

Frequently asked questions ­about Forum Choice

iGuide: The Court Procedure for Obtaining Financial Orders

The court process is designed to encourage parties to reach agreement with the assistance of the court. Our iGuide sets out in detail the court procedure for resolving financial matters.

iGuide: Divorces Within Europe

Where you can potentially divorce in one or more European Country extreme caution is required. Our iGuide sets out a little more of the difficulties in this situation.

iGuide: Divorces Outside of Europe

This iGuide explains some of the issues where one or more countries (one being outside of Europe) can potentially deal with a divorce.

iGuide: Taxation and Divorce

This iGuide provides an introduction to tax issues on divorce for the tax year 2016/2017.

iGuide: Enforcing Foreign Financial Orders in England

The enforcement of orders made abroad in England is a complex area. Here is our iGuide to the process.

FAQ: Spousal Maintenance

Frequently asked questions ­about Spousal Maintenance

FAQ: Foreign marriages & divorce

Frequently asked questions ­about Foreign marriages & divorce

Podcast: Financial Outcomes on Marriage Breakdown

David Hodson speaks on what is the law in England on financial outcomes on marriage breakdown. It has been the subject of two major House of Lords decisions and numerous Court of Appeal and High Court reported cases in the past six years. Yet many practitioners in England and abroad are confused by what is the state of the law. One thing is certain, looking to statute law will not provide an answer!

Podcast: Family Cases with an International Dimension

David Hodson speaks on family cases with an international dimension. For a lawyer dealing primarily with purely national cases, it can be rather a shock when a case arrives with an international element. What should the practitioner be alert to and what issues should be looked at?

The Family Law Show: Programme 4 - Children Disputes and Issues

Lucy Loizou and Carolynn Usher offer information and practical guidance for parents where there are disputes that concern their children following the breakdown of a relationship

The Family Law Show: Programme 1 - Divorce - The Basics

Lucy Loizou interviews Lucy Greenwood about the divorce process in England and Wales, and Lucy Loizou explains the importance and procedure of obtaining a divorce in the Ecclesiastical Court (the Greek Orthodox Church) following an English civil divorce

The Family Law Show: Programme 5 - Alternative Dispute Resolution

Lucy Loizou and Denise Carter OBE discuss alternative methods of resolving family disputes without the need of going to Court

The Family Law Show: Programme 7 - Finances & Assets upon Divorce

Lucy Loizou and Carmel Brown discuss how financial matters are dealt with on divorce

The Family Law Show: Programme 6 - Unmarried Couples

Stuart Clark and Lucy Loizou discuss the rights of unmarried couples and their children

The Family Law Show: Programme 9 - General Principles for Child Relocation after Relationship Breakdown

Lucy Loizou and Ann Thomas offer guidance to parents who are thinking about permanently relocating abroad with their child/children

The Family Law Show: Programme 12 - Achieving Divorce Amicably

This programme gives an overview on achieving divorce amicably and gives guidance to viewers about the key considerations in this area of the law

Financial Provision: Spousal Maintenance Formula

This article proposes formulae for calculating capital distribution and spousal maintenance on divorce. It does not seek to replace or reform the law. It seeks to help some couples and lawyers make better progress to a settlement and provide more certainty and predictability. The formulae are relatively easy to operate and can be adapted to IT Web based resources.

Podcast: Jurisdiction in Divorce Cases

David Hodson speaks on the grounds for jurisdiction in divorce cases. This covers the notorious first to issue principle which applies in any case in which another in European country might be involved.  Specifically  it looks at good practice in the issuing of divorce petitions in such cases.

Podcast: Residence in English Law

David Hodson speaks on the concept of residence in English law, as it is the primary basis for jurisdiction. There have been recent case law developments bringing England closer into alignment with the European family law.

The Family Law Show: Programme 3 - Recognition of Foreign Marriages and Divorces

Lucy Loizou talks with Hannah Budd about the recognition of foreign marriages and divorces and whether you can claim further financial provision in the event that you have been divorced abroad and feel that you have received an unfair financial outcome

High Court awards £453m in divorce proceedings – but finds no departure from equality

Fatimah Farag, assistant solicitor, looks at the recent decision of AAZ v BBZ and the Court’s approach to the parties’ huge levels of wealth.

AAZ v BBZ, C Ltd and P Ltd [2016] EWHC 3234 (Fam), a financial relief case heard by Haddon-Cave J in late November and early December 2016 with judgment released on 12 May 2017, sees the High Court make one of the largest awards in an English case. 

Will I be left penniless after my divorce?

This article looks at what factors are taken into account when a divorcing couple has to separate their financial assets and also considers what the split will be and how that split is calculated.

Have you been divorced abroad? English Financial Settlements after a Foreign Divorce

Even though there has been a divorce abroad the English Family Court has discretion to make a financial order against a former husband or wife. This can overcome financial hardship when the divorce courts of the other country made an inadequate financial settlement.

Legal and practical things to consider if you are marrying abroad...

With more people marrying abroad it is essential that couples consider the legal and practical implications of their foreign marriage.

EU approves European divorce enhanced co-operation

David Hodson's summary of the content of the Regulation drawing attention to crucial elements for practitioners, clients and future policymakers

Motion debated in the House of Commons for "no fault" divorce

A ten minute motion will be debated in the House of Commons today at the instigation of Conservative MP Richard Bacon seeking to bring in a Bill providing for “no-fault” divorce in England and Wales.

The current law provides that the only ground for divorce is the irretrievable breakdown of a marriage. This requires one of five “facts”:

iGuide: Resolution by Out of Court Settlements

There are many different ways to resolve cases without the need to go to court. Here is our iGuide in relation to out of court settlements.

The International Family Law Group’s response to the Law Commission consultation on the enforcement of family financial orders

iFLG have submitted their response to the Law Commission’s consultation in relation to the enforcement of family financial orders.