Consent Orders - Family Law Partners

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Consent Orders

Most divorcing couples will reach an agreement on how their finances will be divided without the need to go to court. However, to make this agreement legally binding, you will need a consent order.

Should you require a consent order if you are getting a divorce or if you are already divorced, our team of expert solicitors/lawyers are here to help. We can assist you in negotiating a fair settlement, drafting the consent order, and applying to the court to get the consent order approved and made legally binding.

As family law specialists, we are well-versed in this area of the law and have the experience and empathy to support you throughout the entire process.

Contact our divorce solicitors

To get in touch with our divorce solicitors/lawyers, you can call any of our offices on 0330 404 5878 or email us at [email protected]. Alternatively, you can use our contact form to request a call back. Our solicitors/lawyers will be happy to answer any initial questions you may have.

How can we help?

Our solicitors/lawyers have many years of experience guiding clients through the process of negotiating, drafting and formalising consent orders that are needed to legally finalise financial agreements that are reached as a result of a divorce. We will first discuss your situation with you to get a thorough understanding of the best available options to you, whilst also addressing any concerns or worries you may have.

The legal advice we provide is always bespoke and tailored to your circumstances, as no two cases will ever be the same. Our solicitors/lawyers will work diligently to help you get a consent order in place that is fair and legally binding.

We believe in a non-adversarial approach to resolving matters and so, we will encourage the use of processes such as Mediation and the Collaborative Law model if you need assistance to work out the terms of your divorce financial arrangements..

We also follow the Resolution Code of Practice and Family Law Protocol.

Our consent orders services

Our consent order services include:

  • Following a full understanding of your case, providing bespoke and tailored legal advice pertaining to your consent order– our solicitors/lawyers will be happy to answer any questions you may have regarding this process.
  • Drafting of the consent order and supporting documents as well as submitting it to the court – our expert solicitors/lawyers can handle the drafting and submission of the consent order application on your behalf.
  • Review and amendments – before submitting to the court, we can go through the documents with you to ensure you are happy with and fully understand the agreement.
  • Negotiations – should issues arise when trying to reach an agreement, we can represent you within the negotiation discussions.

Contact our divorce solicitors

To get in touch with our specialist team, you can call any of our offices on 0330 404 5878 or email us at [email protected]. Alternatively, you can use our contact form to request a call back. Our divorce solicitors will be happy to answer any initial questions you may have.

Answering common questions about Consent Orders

What are financial remedy consent orders?

A financial remedy consent order is a document that sets out the terms of the financial agreement reached between a divorcing couple. Once both spouses have reached an agreement on how their finances will be divided, they will then sign the consent order alongside a court form called the “Statement of Information” or “form D81” which details the financial situation so the court can consider whether or not the terms of the agreement reached are fair and within the court’s discretion to approve.

After the consent order has been approved by a judge, it is then made legally binding once the divorce final order is in place and it can be enforced through the court if either individual later breaches the terms of the consent order. In this way, the consent order works to provide certainty and peace of mind for the future and in some cases if the terms of the consent order provide for such it can prevent any future financial claims from being made against either former spouse.

How long do consent orders take to process?

How long it takes for a consent order to be approved will depend on multiple factors such as the court’s workload and how complex the finances and assets are. However, in general, a consent order often takes between four and ten weeks to be approved.

How do you apply for a consent order?

The application to court for a consent order can be relatively straightforward. If you are using a solicitor to make the application on your behalf they can do so via the online court portal. The separating spouses will first need to agree on how they would like their finances to be divided. Following this, the consent order can be drafted. The consent order has to be drafted in a specific way to ensure it can be made legally binding, given the importance of the consent order it is recommended that it is drafted by a specialist family law solicitor/lawyer. Then, subject to a conditional order within divorce proceedings being in place, the consent order is submitted to the court Once reviewed by a judge, it will then be approved if the judge is satisfied with its fairness. It will then become legally binding once the divorce final order is granted.

Does a solicitor/lawyer have to draft a consent order?

It is highly recommended that a specialist family law solicitor/lawyer drafts the consent order, as even the slightest error can cause lengthy delays and issues during this process as well as potentially causing you significant prejudice and financial hardship in the long run if it is not drafted correctly.

What is the difference between a consent order and a clean break order?

A clean break order is provision that can in certain circumstances where it is fair and appropriate to do so be included within a consent order. A clean break provision in a consent order severs the financial ties between the spouses following a divorce. Without this in place financial claims remain open, even if the spouses have agreed at the time of the divorce they don’t intend to make any financial claims. A clean break provision can be postponed until a future date, so for example spousal maintenance may be paid for a fixed period until the clean break provision comes into effect. The court has a duty to consider whether there can be a clean break. If there is to be a clean break the court needs to satisfy itself that a clean break is fair in that both spouses will be able to survive financially without the assistance of any maintenance or financial provision from the other.

What are the risks of not getting a consent order?

The risks of not getting a consent order are that the financial agreement that you made with your spouse will not be legally binding. This means that should they change their mind in the future, they may be able to make a claim against you. Having a consent order provides protection against such situations.

How do you enforce a consent order?

Should your former spouse breach the terms of the consent order, it is recommended that in the first instance you attempt to resolve the issue for instance by way of discussions between yourself, at mediation or via solicitors/lawyers. Should this fail, legal action may be required which could include applying to the court for enforcement. This process involves submitting an application that will include the details of the breach. Once an application is made, the Court will consider the application and the breach. Unless the breaching party can demonstrate they have a good reason for the breach, the Court will usually enforce the consent order. The action the court will take will depend on the nature of the breach of the consent order. Failure to comply with a consent order is contempt of Court, and this is a serious offence. The breach of a consent order can result in serious consequences such as fines or imprisonment.

Contact our specialist divorce solicitors

If you would like an appointment with one of our divorce and finance specialists in BrightonLondonHorshamKentEssexNorth Hampshire & Surrey or South/Mid Hampshire then please contact us on 0330 055 2234.

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