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Family Lawyers Give Cautious Welcome To New Divorce Guideline Plan

Clarity For Couples Backed ‘But Mediator Neutrality Must Remain’


Proposals to provide separating couples with new guidelines regarding how property and income will be distributed in the event of a relationship breakdown have been cautiously welcomed by family law experts, who revealed concerns regarding the impact the information may have on mediators.

Justice Minister Simon Hughes has announced that the Family Justice Council is to take forward recent recommendations from the Law Commission that the law related to financial needs on divorce or dissolution of a civil partnership must be clarified.

The move has come after a Law Commission report revealed there was confusion about how one party would be needed to meet the other’s financial needs following the breakdown of a relationship.

According to the Government, the new guidance expected later this year, will dispel myths and allow couples to approach separation with realistic expectations, reduce regional variations in the interpretation of ‘financial needs’ and allow mediators to offer financial advice to couples looking to settle out of court.

The announcement of such steps has been welcomed by Irwin Mitchell’s Family Law team, which specialises in providing advice to couples on the separation process and helping them to achieve an amicable agreement both in and out of the courts.

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