When you separate, one of the biggest fears that you have initially is whether you will be ok financially. You may be wondering what you are entitled to, whether you can stay in the house, whether you can keep your pension or what maintenance you will pay or receive. As financial planners, we can help you to work out how to separate your assets together. This can be done either as a first step or part of the mediation or collaborative process.
How does financial planning help?
We can create a picture of the future for both of you, incorporating your future plans. This can show whether the proposed solution is fair to you both. It works best where you are trying to come up with an amicable solution. It is more difficult if one or both of you having feelings of animosity. However, it is still possible.
The big issues
When you are working our how to separate your assets together, the big issues tend to be the house and the pensions. This is because these tend to be the most valuable assets. One of you may want to stay in the house. One of you may want to keep their pensions. It may be possible to achieve what you want together by looking at your assets more creatively and understanding your future lifestyle.
In the case of a long marriage if there are surplus assets when both you and your ex have everything you need, you can exclude assets that were not built up during the marriage. In the case where there are needs that have to be met, all assets are available to meet these needs if a judge is required to agree the settlement.
It is important that you are both housed somewhere suitable for your needs. We can help you to think about this. Also, we can work out if and how one of you can stay in the family home, if that is what you would like. Alternatively, you may prefer to begin your new lives in homes that you didn’t occupy together.
It is not uncommon for one partner to want to keep their own pensions and feel that the other person has no rights to a share in something that is theirs. However, one of you may have had a better work pension and opted just to save in that. Alternatively, one of you may have had a career break to look after children. Pensions are an important consideration in divorce. Just as you would expect to split the equity in a house, you would expect to address pension assets similarly.
If you think we could help you, please send an email to Tamsin@smartdivorce.co.uk or download our guide for the first steps.
Tamsin Caine works with divorcing couples and individuals to help them to sort out their finances fairly and amicably. She helps them to work out what they want from their future lives and the steps they need to take to get it. She is a Chartered Financial Planner and founder of Smart Divorce. Tamsin can help at any stage of the divorce process. If you would like to arrange a free initial meeting, or just have a question, please get in touch either by phoning 07975 922766 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.