Here is an overview of financial matters related to divorce and separation.  The terms explained are…

  • Spousal Maintenance
  • Child Maintenance
  • Lump Sum
  • Property Transfer Order
  • Order for Sale
  • Pension Share Order
  • Pension Attachment Order
  • Interim Order
  • Consent Order
Financial matters in divorce and separation are very complex so we would strongly advise you to consult with us to understand the specifics of your own particular circumstances as this only provides a general outline.

Also, it must be stressed that it is always far better to agree financial matters through mediation or collaborative law rather than have the courts impose a settlement.

Divorce & Separation Financial MattersDivorce & Separation Financial Matters

Spousal Maintenance is the maintenance payments made by one former partner to the other in his or her own right.  It is in addition to any maintenance payments for the benefit of children.  It can continue: until either party dies, until the recipient enters another marriage (or civil partnership) or for a fixed term.

Child Maintenance is the maintenance payments made to help support a child’s living costs after the parents have divorced or separated.  It is usually paid by the parent who does not have primary care of the children to the parent (or other person such as a grandparent) who does have that responsibility.  It is for the benefit of children (up to their 18/19th birthday) who are in full time secondary education.

Lump Sum is a single (rather than regular as in maintenance above) payment made by one former partner to the other.  This may be, for example, to divide savings or to compensate the other partner if one partner is awarded the home.

Property Transfer Order is where the court orders that a property (normally the home but this can cover investments) is transferred from one former partner to the other or that the proportions held by each are adjusted.

Order for Sale is where the court orders the sale of property (for example a house or investments) and determines the proportion of proceeds that are awarded to each former partner.

Pension Share Order is where the court orders that one or more pension funds are split and transferred between the two former partners with each receiving and owning a determined percentage.

Pension Attachment Order is where ownership of the pension fund remains with the partner nominated in the fund but the other partner is awarded a determined percentage of the benefits (which could be income, lump sum or death benefits).

Interim Order can be issued so that one partner pays for the support of the other partner and any children before final arrangements are determined.

Consent Order is a legally binding agreement that is voluntarily and jointly agreed by a divorcing or divorced couple to finalise all financial obligations arising from their marriage.  For more information see our article on Consent Orders.