Separation and Relationship Property
When we have clients, who are uneasy about how the law might apply to their property on separation, our advice is simple: contract out of the law. Agreements like these are colloquially known as “pre-nups” or “contracting out agreements “and can be made at any stage of a relationship.
However, recent recommendations by the Law Commission who advise Government on possible law changes could mean that Courts can make changes to these private agreements if it is considered to be in the best interests of the children.
The primacy of children’s best interests is a common theme across the Law Commission’s report in this area of law. Other suggested changes include:
- Ex-partners/spouses could be ordered to share their incomes for up to five years, if certain features exist in the relationship.
- The family home, which under today’s law is usually divided 50/50, may be retained as separate property by a party if they owned it prior to the relationship. The other party will still be entitled to the property’s increase in value during the relationship.
The Report will be finalised this year, at which point it will be presented to the Government for possible changes to current legislation. We will keep you updated on progress with the recommendations and any law changes proposed.
In the meantime, should you require any advice on Relationship Property or other Family Law matters please contact one of our Family Law team.