06 Feb Marriage is more than a big white wedding and a fantastic honeymoon it is a legal relationship, what does this mean?
Marriage is a legal relationship, I know it’s not very romantic to think about marriage in that way but often this fact is overlooked when people are focusing on the big white wedding and booking the honeymoon.
People still enter into a marriage with their preconceived ideas of what would be right or wrong if the relationship were to break down. A lot of people still mistakenly think that if they have a pension going into a marriage they will keep it if the marriage breaks down because people think that it’s in my name, why would my spouse be entitled to make a claim for a share of it, well the short answer is getting married changes everything. It is therefore important to consider getting legal advice before getting married so you are going into it with your eyes wide open. If the worst happens and the married then ends, it may be less of a shock when you realise your spouse can make financial claims against you. So what financial claims can be made at the end of a marriage? Well, the law allows a spouse to make the following claims, obviously, not all may apply as everything will depend on the circumstances of the individual couple getting divorced:
- Property Adjustment Order – The court can make an order for the sale of property, for a transfer of the property from joint names into one person’s sole name, for the sale of property to be delayed until a point in the future, for the property to remain jointly owned subject to a declaration of trust which would set out who is to live at the property, who is to be responsible for outgoings in respect of the property and when the property will eventually fall to be sold and how the sale proceeds would be divided. If a property is solely owned by one person this does not stop the person who does not own it making a claim against it. The court can also if the family home is a rental property decide who is to have the tenancy.
- Lump Sum Order – An order for one of you to pay a lump sum to the other person either in one lump sum or a series of lump sum payments or a lump sum by way of instalments.
- Pension Sharing Order or pension compensation sharing order – For one of you to receive a percentage share of the other person’s pension fund. The percentage share will be taken out of the person’s pension fund and put into a pension fund in the other person’s name.
- Spousal Maintenance Order (Periodical Payments Order) – An order for one of you to pay a regular sum of money to the other person to enable them to have sufficient money to meet their outgoings.
- Pension Attachment Order or Pension Compensation Attachment Order– These orders are rarely made now due to new pension freedoms. The pension attachment order would provide for the pension company to pay a certain amount of income to the other person once the pension went into payment.
Also, people still mistakenly believe that getting a divorce, and decree absolute which is the end of the divorce proceedings, means that will then stop the other person making financial claims, however this is incorrect. To end the financial claims there has to be a financial court order made by the court. I’ll be writing an article about ending financial claims in March 2020, so watch this space.
If you are getting married or are engaged to be married or are thinking of proposing it would be advisable to take advice, regardless of how unromantic this is. At least you’ll be entering into the marriage with your eyes wide open. Hopefully, your marriage endures and so you would not need to worry, but the sad thing is that not all marriages do endure. If you want to get advice please book an appointment to see me, Genette Gale, Family Solicitor and Collaborative Lawyer on 01747 852377 or email us and we will ring you back firstname.lastname@example.org . If you are concerned about costs then we have a range of options for your initial appointment https://rutterslaw.co.uk/our-services/family-law-matters/
Now back to the wedding planning, I hear one of the top honeymoon destinations is the Maldives and looking at the stunning photo below it is easy to see why.