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As the recession continues to bite, middle income families are finding that clean break divorces are very difficult to achieve. A clean break divorce means that the family assets are divided in such a way so that neither party has any more involvement in the other’s assets, particularly when it comes to property and pensions. However, a combination of increasing prices, redundancies, tough lending criteria by mortgage lenders and adult children continuing to live at home until their mid twenties, is leading to changes in divorce settlement solutions.
For example, Mesher Orders (i.e an order for the sale of the former matrimonial home in which the sale is postponed until the youngest child attains 18 or finishes full time education or training) are on the rise. Traditionally, solicitors have always been very keen to avoid Mesher Orders wherever possible due to the inherent difficulties that can result from them, such as the spouse who remains in the matrimonial home having to sell the house (or raise capital) in order to buy out the former spouse at a time when it may be difficult to get a mortgage (due to age, lack of earning and mortgage capacity etc). There can also be Capital Gains Tax implications for the spouse who did not remain in the matrimonial home where he or she has purchased another property as a main dwelling home.
Another example is couples resorting to house sharing agreements post divorce which, according to an article in the Independent on 20 August 2011, are also on the rise.
For further information and advice on this issue, and other family law issues, please contact us for a free initial consultation on 01992 306 616 or 0207 956 2740 or email us.Back to Law Articles