Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Family Lore Clinic: Is a sealed consent order in divorce dependent on decree absolute?

Yet another question about consent orders, i.e. orders setting out the agreed financial/property settlement on divorce or dissolution of civil partnership.

The answer to the question is quite straightforward: consent orders can be made at any time after the decree nisi of divorce (or conditional order on dissolution of civil partnership), but do not take effect until the decree absolute (or final order on dissolution of civil partnership). So the consent order is dependent upon decree absolute, and the settlement contained in it is not final until after decree absolute.

The simplest way to think of it is that the financial/property settlement relates to the divorce (or dissolution of civil partnership) - without that, there obviously can't be a divorce settlement, and there is no divorce until it is finalised by the decree absolute.

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

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