Separating from your spouse can have a huge impact on your finances, particularly if you relied on their income while you were together.
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If your relationship ends in divorce or separation, you can ask for financial support—commonly known as spousal maintenance.
This is in addition to any child support they may have to pay, either voluntarily or following an assessment or court order.
There is no set formula to calculate the amount to be paid, it will vary on a case by case basis.
Divorce and separation solicitors at Austin Kemp can help you apply for spousal maintenance and ensure your needs are recognised by the courts.
When it comes to divorce or separation, it can feel as if you’re on your own. But it doesn’t need to be like that. At Austin Kemp, our goal is to help you navigate the murky world of separation and ensure you’re getting the right financial support you deserve.
Whether you want to claim for spousal maintenance or cancel a maintenance order, our experienced divorce solicitors will look after you and your interests.
Our financial settlement solicitors understand that we are all individuals with different needs. As such, they strive to ensure you get the spousal maintenance you deserve with no hassle or red tape. Our experts can advise you on various aspects of spousal maintenance in the UK, including:
We’ll help you navigate the complex legal settlement options, such as capitalising spousal maintenance payments or agreeing on a clean break court order. We can also assist with other aspects of divorce, such as applying for a fair settlement.
Spousal maintenance is often paid on a regular, monthly basis, but on some occasions, it can be paid as a single lumpsum.
So, how do you apply for spousal maintenance?
In most cases, spousal maintenance is negotiated as a part of the divorce settlement, meaning the separating couple can voluntarily reach an agreement. This option allows the parties to reach an amicable decision quickly, avoiding the tension and uncertainty of court proceedings.
In the event both parties fail to agree voluntarily, they can seek legal redress in a court of law. An Austin Kemp divorce solicitor can help you with this.
At the hearing, the court will decide if any spousal maintenance should be paid, and if so, the amount and when the payments should stop.
Note that spousal maintenance will not be applicable in every case. When making an application for spousal maintenance, regard should be given to section 25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 factors, alongside the principles of “fairness” of the payments being made.
Spousal maintenance is a duty of support by the other partner to ensure the receiving spouse maintains their standard of living in the event of divorce or separation. At times, a divorce can be financially unfair to a low-earning or no-income spouse. Spousal maintenance seeks to create fairness after the marriage ends. It can also be claimed as an interim measure while other financial issues are still to be finalised.
You can come to an agreement with your ex with or without the help of a family law solicitor. This is the most recommended option as it saves you on costs and time that would otherwise be spent in and out of courts.
Whether legal help is required in your case depends on many factors, including your motivations, your partner’s response, and whether the divorce is amicable. Direct conversations with your ex-partner regarding the spousal maintenance amount may be the approach you wish to take.
It’s advisable to consider whether the amount payable will be fixed or dependent on the other partner’s income. For example, what happens when the paying partner losses the job or the receiving partner starts earning a sufficient salary?
If you can’t reach an agreement, your only option is to proceed to court.
In determining whether you qualify for spousal maintenance and how much, the court will consider many factors, including:
Should the court decide to award spousal maintenance, it will consider these factors alongside other factors that may be relevant to the case.
If you lose your job and cannot afford the spousal maintenance, you should negotiate with your ex-spouse to reach an agreement.
If an agreement cannot be reached, you can apply to the court for a suspension or variation of the maintenance order while you remain out of work.
A variation of the maintenance order may be necessary if alternative employment is secured but with a lower remuneration than the previous job. Our experienced divorce solicitors can help you apply for a suspension or variation of the maintenance order.
Austin Kemp has plenty of experience in handling the difficult elements of family law.
Whether you’re just sorting out spousal maintenance or a combination of legal issues arising from your divorce, our dedicated team of solicitors will advise you on the way forward and guide you through the claim application and settlement process.
Our solicitors can also advise you on the best option if you’re unable to pay spousal maintenance. Get in touch with us today, and let us help you secure your future.Get In Touch
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Call Us: 0333 311 0925