Anne Thistlethwaite, family law specialist with AMD Solicitors discusses practical considerations on separation.
If you are contemplating a separation, whether you are married or co-habiting, you may want to consider at an early stage whether there are steps you should take to protect your position.
You may have joint assets, be it a home or bank or savings accounts. You need to consider the consequences of any steps taken but, at the same time, ensure that your partner doesn’t take any action which would be disadvantageous to you.
Consider whether you need to rearrange joint accounts and credit cards, for example, so that both signatures are required on cheques and withdrawal forms.
If in doubt as to whether your home or other properties are in joint names, you can check at the Land Registry. If the property is in the sole name of your spouse or partner, then you can ask your solicitor to protect your interest in the property so that you would be notified if he or she tried to sell or mortgage the property.
Have you made a will? If you jointly own your home as beneficial joint tenants your spouse or partner will inherit the property automatically. You can “sever” the joint tenancy enabling you to leave your share of the property to someone else who you would then need to name in your will.
Concerned that your spouse or partner is about to dispose of any assets to thwart your claims? Your solicitor may be able to obtain a Court Order prohibiting any dealings with those assets. The Court also has power to set aside transactions if it is shown that they intended to defeat the other party’s claims.
We would advise getting legal advice at an early stage. Every situation is different and your solicitor can advise you as to the particular issues relevant to your case.
For a free initial discussion contact Anne and the other members of the Family Law Team at AMD Solicitors by e mail firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone on 0117 9621205.