Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Family Lore Clinic: Is there any benefit to a clean consent order?


Well, I suppose that being clean would make it more legible.

Seriously, I will assume that the questioner meant "clean break consent order".

The simple answer is "yes". The term "clean break" refers to a financial order after divorce or dissolution of civil partnership that dismisses all (further) financial/property claims by either party against the other, thereby ensuring that no such claims may be made.

Accordingly, if you wish to ensure that your former spouse or civil partner cannot make any financial claims against you in the future, you should get a clean break order. You may not consider it necessary, as you may think that you have nothing that your ex could claim, but obviously circumstances can change - the classic example often given is if you win the lottery (although this does not necessarily mean that any claim against your lottery winnings would be successful - still, best to prevent a claim at all).

Note that a clean break is not always appropriate, for example where one party requires the other to pay them maintenance. Note also that the order can specify that the clean break take effect at some future time, e.g. where maintenance is expressed to last only until a particular date or event, such as when the children finish their education.

(As usual, if you require more details or specific advice, you should consult a specialist family lawyer.)

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