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Can Redundancy Pay Be Used In Divorce Settlement?

By: Lorna Elliott LLB (hons), Barrister - Updated: 12 Nov 2018 |
 
Redundancy Divorce Contested Decree

Q.Our decree absolute was granted in December 2008 - the 'minutes of agreement and order sought' state that if not contested (which they were not) the order would be accepted in "full and final satisfaction of all claims for income, capital and pension sharing orders and any other nature whatsover..... save in relation to personal belongings and contents" There are no children involved

My ex-wife and I are (amicably) trying to sort the sale of the matrimonal home given the current state of the market. I made a suggestion as to resolution and now have a letter from her solicitor disagreeing with my suggestion (I see her point of view in some ways so that is not really the issue) but asking that I divulge the details of any redundancy payments received (sadly I was made redundant in January 2009 and it is increasingly looking like any redundancy payment will be needed to support me in the coming months!)

I feel I am firm ground in simply refusing to comply with divulging details as the minutes clearly state "in full and final settlement"

(S.T, 28 March 2009)

A.

A clean break is in effect a consent order that ensures that all the finances between you and your wife are dealt with at the time. It is not possible to have a clean break relating to any offspring but given that there were no children involved this is not applicable in any event.

The way a clean break works is this: once the order is made, this dismisses all financial claims between you and your wife, forever. A clean break order may include the agreement to pay a sum of money to your spouse, sale of assets, transfer of all or a share of the matrimonial home from one party to another.

Ongoing Financial Matters

However, I note that you say that you and your ex-wife are still trying to deal with the sale of the matrimonial home and that you have made a suggestion in relation to this, which has been rejected by your ex-wife through her solicitor. If you did have a clean break, was the suggestion that you made otherwise than in accordance with the order made in November of last year? Was your suggestion through your solicitor?

Redundancy

If there had been a possibility that you were facing redundancy last November, you would have been required to disclose it at the time. If you had known about it but had chosen not to disclose it, your ex-wife may be able to argue that you had not offered a true picture of your financial position.

Finality

Once a clean break order is made, the court will in fact dismiss any further claims that either spouse makes. The finality is such that this is the case even if one spouse wins the lottery, inherits a substantial estate or dies.

Consult a Lawyer

I am not without sympathy for your predicament, however I would suggest that you contact the solicitor who dealt with your divorce. This is because I cannot advise you without knowing more about your circumstances. In order to try to protect yourself and your financial future, especially in light of your redundancy, I would suggest you speak to someone who knows more about your case. Good luck.

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My partner & I parted 9 years ago. We had a document drawn up by solicitors to say that I had bought him out of the property and that I would own it 100%. I now wish to sell up and buy a property, and have been told by solicitors that the document is not legal as the law has changed. They need my ex.to sign forms and to send documents (passport, utility bill etc.) giving permission for me to be able to sell. He is refusing to do this and has returned the forms un completed. Since we parted I have paid the mortgage on my own, his name is still on the mortgage documents. The document drawn up by the solicitors in the first place was to protect me against something like this happening. Can you please advise me what I can now do.
stoobie - 12-Nov-18 @ 2:48 PM
@worriedlady - it would have to be something the court negotiated in terms of a settlement figure. A court will look at whether the inherited assets were deemed to be part of the family pot, or whether they were kept separate from the main run of marital assets. If they were kept separate, the court may award them to the party who inherited them, particularly if the other party's financial situation is stong. However, the fact that you bought the children up in the house from an early age and that house being paid for by you, may also be taken into consideration by the courts. I hope this helps.
DivorceResource - 8-Jan-15 @ 12:33 PM
Hello, I was married to my partner for 20 years. We always lived in council accommodation until I was left an inheritance to which I purchased a property to secure a roof over our three children's heads and also give them an inheritance of their own in the future. After 8 years of being in the house we split up (this was my decision) My ex put in for a divorce straight away and even applied for the absolute before any financial settlement had been agreed. He has always said that once my youngest daughter turns 18 he will want half of the house. Even though our children are now 23, 21 and 17 this is their home and although the older 2 are working can not afford to get accommodation of their own. I would have to move a long way away to be able to afford to buy another property and their lives are here, so effectively he would be making them homeless. I have already enquired with the local council as to their entitlement for social housing and basically they wouldn't be, they would have to "sofa surf" for about 3 years. I'm not saying me ex husband shouldn't get anything but I would just like to know if the fact I purchase the house outright (therefore for the 8 years we lived there my husband did not have the worry most men do about providing a roof over his families head.,...I did that) would I be entitled to a higher percentage of the house. I have copies of the will and letters transferring the money for the purchase of the house. My daughter turns 18 this year and it worries me every day. Thank you.
worried lady - 7-Jan-15 @ 9:45 PM
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