How do you start financial proceedings in a divorce?

by Nadine de Souza

If you want to formalise your financial situation when you split up with your spouse, then you need to make an application to the court to consider and separate your finances.

Before any formal financial proceedings can begin you have to attend a Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting to explore all non-court based ways to find a resolution. If no resolution can be found, then you can start financial proceedings.

Financial proceedings are started separately from divorce proceedings. So, although you may have already started divorce proceedings, you will have to fill in extra paperwork for your financial application.

Here is an outline of the documents that you need to complete:

1. Divorce Form A

The first thing you need to do is fill in a document called Form A. You must include the addresses, Land Registry numbers and mortgage details of each property that you may have a claim against. It's also sensible to tick all the boxes on Form A even if you don’t intend to make a claim in the end.

The court fee is currently £255. However, this does change, so you should always contact your local court to check the fee. Your completed Form A and the fee is sent to the court which is dealing with the divorce paperwork.

Once you have filed your Form A then the court fixes a hearing date - called a First Appointment - within 12 to 16 weeks. Before the First Appointment there are some forms that have to be sent to the court and your spouse.

2. Divorce Form E

The main form is called Form E. This is a long form that is designed to give a comprehensive view of each spouse’s financial position. You have to include various documents with this form.

These are:

  • Any property valuations from the last six month
  • The most recent mortgage statement
  • The last 12 months’ worth of bank statements
  • The surrender value of your insurance policies
  • The last two years’ worth of business accounts
  • A recent pension valuation
  • Your last three payslips
  • The most recent P60.

This has to be sent to the court at least 35 days before the First Appointment.

At least 14 days before the First Appointment both spouses have to file with the court and give to the other spouse the following:

  • A concise statement of the issues in the case
  • A chronology of events in the marriage
  • A questionnaire with questions for your spouse about the answers they have given in their Form E
  • Form G, which asks you to state if you are ready to skip the First Appointment and consider a more complex hearing called a Financial Dispute Resolution Appointment.

3. Divorce Form H

Just before the First Appointment you have to send Form H to the court outlining an estimate of your legal costs (if any).

The First Appointment is mostly a procedural appointment that will determine how the case will proceed. The court will make orders about what questions your spouse should answer; what valuations are required; and whether any expert reports or other evidence is required.

Help from Lawpack

All the divorce forms you need – and expert guidance on how to use them – can be found in Lawpack’s Separation & DIY Divorce Kit.

If you need assistance in completing the forms, then you can use our DIY Divorce Service who will complete them for you. With our Managed Divorce Service they will complete them and also file them at court for you.

If you want more in-depth information from a divorce lawyer about all aspects of divorce law then read our guide, How to Get a Divorce by Punam Denley. Packed with tips and expert advice to ensure that you get through the divorce process smoothly.

Other information

Published on: November 10, 2014

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