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before fi ling for divorce to avoid any blame falling on one party. The main difference with a separation


agreement is that it is not approved by a judge and the terms cannot be enforced in the same way if one party breaches the agreement or reneges on the terms. T e fi nancial claims remain open and in force until they are formally dismissed by way of a consent order. Therefore, a separation agreement does not


provide the finality that a consent order does. Many separating couples enter into a separation agreement and then later, once divorce proceedings are issued, have the same recorded into a consent order. T is is often a paperwork formality. Sometimes, however, this exercise can cause


one party to want to look into the arrangements once again, especially if there has been a signifi cant change in circumstances since the agreement was entered into. T e separation agreement would not automatically be upheld by the court in subsequent fi nancial proceedings in the same way as a consent order would be. Recording your fi nancial agreements following


separation is imperative. If parties wish to agree fi nancial matters prior to a divorce petition being issued, then a separation agreement provides a good interim position. However, in the event the marriage has irretrievably broken down and there is no prospect of reconciliation, a consent order is the most sensible option to fi nalise the fi nancial claims couples have against one another within their divorce proceedings and dismiss any future claims. T e introduction of no-fault divorce is due to come


into eff ect in April 2022. T is will allow parties to divorce without one party blaming the other or waiting until they have been separated two years before starting the process. Parties will be able to divorce solely on the basis that the marriage has broken down. T is will mean that those couples recording fi nancial agreement in a separation agreement simply because they are waiting to issue proceedings for two years will no longer be necessary. Once proceedings are issued, these parties would be best placed entering into a consent order to record fi nancial agreement Howes Percival’s specialist family solicitors are


experts in relation to all aspects of relationship and family matters and can assist with a wide range of issues faced by families on an everyday basis. Howes Percival’s family lawyers are members of Resolution and are committed to a constructive, sensitive and non-confrontational approach to resolving of family disputes. Clients praise the team for their professionalism, pragmatic advice and personal approach.


To discuss how to record fi nancial agreements reached within the divorce process, or any other family matter, contact Alishia Marrocco on 01604 258032 or at alishia.marrocco@howespercival.com


ALL THINGS BUSINESS 37


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