Divorce Myths Part 2: Finances


Today’s topic covers the most common myths associated with resolving financial matters in divorce. There are many myths surrounding how money is dealt with.

It also makes a big difference whether you are in fact legally married or whether you are “cohabitees”(i.e.living together).

Here are  some top tips from family law specialist solicitor, Amanda Phillips-Wylds:


1. Assets are always shared equally on divorce.

The starting point for division of assets is a 50/50 split, this is known as the ‘yardstick of equality’. However it will not be appropriate in all cases to share the assets equally. There is no set formula which the court uses to make a decision, rather it has a list of factors it must consider and give weight to arrive at a fair split. These include the welfare of any minor child, the income, earning capacity, and property each of the spouses has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future, the financial needs, obligations and responsibilities which each of the spouses has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future, the standard of living enjoyed by the family, the age of each spouse and the duration of the marriage, any physical or mental disability of either spouse, the contributions which each of the spouses has made or is likely to make in the foreseeable future to the welfare of the family, including contributions in looking after the home or family, the conduct of each spouse , if that conduct is so bad that it would be unfair to disregard it, and finally the value of any benefit which a spouse will lose by reason of the divorce e.g. a pension.


2. If you commit adultery you will receive less than your fair share of the assets.

It is only in very exceptional circumstances the court will look at someone’s behaviour and decide that it should be taken into account when deciding a split of the assets. Adultery would not normally be taken into account. Examples of behaviour that have include; a wife shooting her husband with a shot gun with intent to endanger his life, a serious attack on the wife by her husband which rendered her incapable of working, and a husband abducting the children. More often than not it is financial misconduct and not violent misconduct which is raised by the spouses during the course of a divorce.


3. Once you receive a Decree Absolute that’s it.

Unless there is an approved court order dealing with the financial claims spouses have as a result of their marriage, then either spouse could make a future claim against the other’s assets, even several years after they have been divorced. Having a Decree Absolute does not end financial claims. There must be a court order.”


If you have found this blog helpful, please click on the links below for other blogs in this series:

Divorce Myths Part 1: Divorce

Divorce Myths Part 3: Children


To get in touch with Amanda Phillips- Wylds and to find out more about her family law services, you can contact her via her website KJS Family Solicitors.


It is very important to obtain legal advice on your specific circumstances. Just because your friend received a certain financial settlement in their divorce, does not mean it will be the same for you. There are lots of issues to consider and whilst the court provides some guidelines, matters are dealt with on a case by case basis.

If you would like further guidance and/or support going through your divorce, please do get in touch with me via my Contact page or on 07970 231744.


If you have found the tips in this blog useful then you will find lots more in my ebook “Tips for Coping with Divorce” which you can download here: free ebook.

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