This is a question that I am asked many times and one where the consequences of not obtaining one can be devastating. The simple answer to this question is yes.
It is often a misconception that once you are divorced or your civil partnership is dissolved, your ex-husband/ex-wife cannot make any claim against your assets. This will only be the case if you are divorced/have a dissolution, and you have a Financial Consent/Remedy Order.
The best way to explain this is in a real-life scenario that I often see:
A husband and wife get a divorce without any legal advice. They share a house together but decide that one party will carry on paying the mortgage for the time being and they will sort out the equity in the property at a later date. Years go by, and perhaps both parties now have other partners. One party then decides that they would like the property sold so their equity can be released. The other party does not want the property sold. They both, at that stage, seek legal advice. There is a risk that the parties cannot agree, in which case they will then need to attend Court, despite it being many years later after their divorce.
In this scenario, both parties have left themselves wide open to financial claims against each other’s assets. Yes, they only have one joint asset but, by this point, one party may have bought another property, the parties may have considerably increased their pensions, they may have significant savings, or they may have received an inheritance. All of this would be open to a claim being made by their ex-wife/ex-husband because they did not have a Financial Consent Order. Further, their new partner’s assets may be taken into account in proceedings.
The only way to have security over your assets in divorce/dissolution is to have a Financial Consent Order as well. There are many ways in which this can be obtained and there doesn’t have to be huge expense or Court hearings.
If you would like further advice, please do not hesitate to contact the Family team for a one-hour appointment, at a reduced fixed fee of £99 plus VAT.