FINANCIAL SETTLEMENT LAWYERS IN BRISTOL, CLEVEDON & PORTISHEAD
We are financial settlement lawyers in Bristol, Clevedon & Portishead
You and your spouse, partner or civil partner may have assets – property, savings, investments, pensions – which will need to be considered upon your separation.
You may own a business either on your own, with others, or together with your spouse or partner. How will these be divided? What is fair? What should you do to protect yourself? The starting point for trying to decide how these assets should be dealt with is by finding out exactly what the assets are and how much they are worth. You may need to obtain independent valuations for some of your assets, such as property or pensions. Once that has been ascertained, we will be able to advise you further about a suitable financial settlement and how best to achieve a financial settlement.
Our Financial Settlement Expertise
We understand that it can be so difficult when separating to have to work out how to divide your assets. Looking at what is fair, while also making sure to protect yourself is a stressful process. With Harbour Family Law you can be sure your assets are in the best hands. We provide each one of our clients with both practical and specialist legal advice – using a supportive framework to help you achieve an amicable settlement. We want to assist you in preserving relationships and ensuring agreements are reasonable and the final outcomes are fair.
Our specialist legal team will listen carefully to your concerns, desired outcomes and current situation in order to provide you with a completely personal and tailored approach to your financial settlement.
Our solicitors have over 80 years’ combined experience dealing with financial settlement negotiations and are experts In the field. Between us we have helped hundreds of clients achieve a positive outcome.
Our Financial Settlement Services
Negotiated settlement services
If you and your partner are able to decide on the split of your assets either directly, or with the aid of mediation, then we can offer assistance to help convert your agreement into a binding and enforceable court order. A voluntary divorce settlement becomes legally binding when you apply for a consent order through court and have this approved by a judge. In this situation, neither of you have to go to a court hearing and the process is usually faster and less expensive than litigation.
We can also constructively negotiate either by correspondence or through round-table meetings with your partner, spouse, or his or her solicitor, outside of the court process, to help you achieve a suitable settlement.
Court applications for financial settlements
In the event that your separation is more complicated – or you own more complex assets – you may have to go to court to acheve an appropriate outcome. If this is the case, we can assist you during every step of the journey from applying to court, to supporting you with the paperwork and court hearings, and helping you to consider how to fairly split your assets.
Your Initial Consultation
At Harbour Family Law, we offer an initial consultation of up to one and a half hours to discuss your financial settlement needs.
During this appointment, we will be able to provide you with initial advice while going through the options available for your settlement. We will also be able to provide you with an estimate of how much your legal proceedings will cost for your case. When it comes to financial settlements, we charge an hourly rate, and this rate varies depending on which member of our expert legal team is working on your case. Get in touch to book your initial consultation today, and to find out more.
If you and your partner have managed to agree upon the split of your assets yourself your solicitor can draft a consent order and liaise with the court to make sure this Is approved by a judge. Alternatively, if you cannot agree, your solicitor can assist you in applying to the court for a financial order. A court order is important as if you do not make your financial settlement legally binding, your partner could dispute the split of assets at any point further down the line.
Your family home is often the biggest asset being considered during the financial settlement process. We will consider the up to date value of the property, and advise you on the best course of action dependent on both parties' wishes, the circumstances of the case and the other assets which are being divided. Your home may be sold, and the net proceeds divided between you or, if one of you wishes to remain there, the equity could be offset against other assets where applicable. You may also reach an alternative agreement whereby you or your partner may move out for now but when the home is sold at an agreed date In the future the money will be split appropriately.
''After ending the disappointing services of a previous law firm, who were acting for me with my divorce and financial settlement, I was recommended to Harbour family Law. I made an appointment with Fiona Greener; this was the best decision I made. After having my first meeting with Fiona, I came away feeling I was not alone. Fiona was superb, her experience, calm reassuring approach and professionalism shone through. The court hearing was something I was dreading but Fiona was so well prepared, and I was so grateful to Fiona for her choice of barrister. They were the dream team at the hearing and the day concluded with a very successful result for me. I cannot thank Fiona enough and all the team at Harbour Family Law.''
Divorce & Financial Remedy
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I consider for a financial settlement alongside my divorce?
During financial settlement negotiations, each party has a duty of full and frank financial disclosure. This means every asset that you own must be disclosed and valued in order to have informed negotiations.
How long does a financial settlement take?
Every divorce is different, and the complexities of each case can cause huge variations in the length of time the entire process will take. But usually, we would recommend allowing six to ten months from start to finish, for the more straightforward cases.
How much does a financial settlement cost?
Every case is different, and this will depend on the assets involved and your personal circumstances. We would be happy to discuss this with you at our initial meeting so you can make informed decisions about the progress of your case.
Who pays the legal fees for a financial settlement?
It Is usual for each party to pay for their own legal fees. If you need to Instruct a joint expert, such as an actuary who specialises In pensions on divorce, most people will divide the cost of this equally. In some cases, such as If one person refuses to cooperate, you may be able to seek a costs order obliging them to repay some or all of your legal fees.
Can I get legal aid for a divorce settlement?
Legal aid for family law disputes is now only available in a few limited circumstances. Harbour Family Law are not able to offer legal aid. If you think you may qualify for legal aid, you should make enquiries with a firm that offer this service to see if you are eligible.
What is a clean break financial settlement?
A clean break financial settlement is the term used to describe the division of property, savings and any other assets, with no ongoing payments being made between you and your partner. Once a clean break order has been finalised, neither party will be able to make any further financial claims.