Finances in Family Law | McAlister Family Law



The resolution of financial issues on the breakdown of a relationship or marriage can be complex and stressful. Having a top divorce solicitor on your side can make a difference as to the outcome of your case.

McAlister Family Law is home to some of the country’s leading divorce and finance lawyers. We can help you whether you are seeking to protect your wealth, uncover hidden assets or simply wish to formalise a settlement negotiated direct with your spouse or partner.

Our Finances Services

Finances in Divorce

When a couple divorce, financial claims can be made against each other’s capital assets, pension and income. The McAlister Family Law team is one of the most experienced in the country and are able to provide you with specialist knowledge and expertise in the strategy and conduct of Court proceedings. 

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Child Maintenance and Financial Support

A highly complex area of the law, it is essential that advice is sought very early on, as to under or over pay could have a significant impact on your case.  The McAlister Family Law team have years of experience advising on all aspects of child maintenance issues.

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Enforcement of Financial Orders

When a party fails to comply with a court order, the aggrieved party will unfortunately have to take steps to enforce the order. Whilst there is a range of enforcement options available, this is often one of the most difficult and frustrating areas of family law.

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Pensions on Divorce

The law surrounding pensions is extremely complicated and it is absolutely paramount that expert advice is obtained from the outset. Your future financial security is fundamental following a divorce which is why pensions and divorce are a specialty at McAlister Family Law.

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Divorce Settlement

Financial divorce settlements or dissolution of civil partnership. Divorce settlements and the resolution of financial issues on the breakdown of a relationship can be complex and contentious and can provide a significant amount of stress and worry if the right advice is not sought.

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Prenuptial and Postnuptial Agreements

This is a fast-developing area of the law and an area where the McAlister Family Law team have a high level of experience. 

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Divorce and Business Assets

Many of our clients or their spouses have businesses which means that there are considerations to be made surrounding the divorce and business assets. These include private limited companies, partnerships, sole traders and family businesses.

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Freezing Orders and Asset Protection

A Judge will make a freezing order if they are satisfied that the one spouse is about to sell or otherwise get rid of an asset with the intention of preventing the other spouse from receiving any financial benefit.

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Financial Consent Orders

If you have reached an agreement with your spouse direct or via mediation or court proceedings, then our specialist divorce and finance team can prepare a financial consent order detailing the agreement reached.  A consent order is required to make a clean break settlement possible.

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All about

our financial services

Out of court settlements and negotiations

Although deciding who gets what following a separation or divorce can be contentious, not all cases need to conclude in court. Our team has significant experience and skill in negotiating favourable settlements whether that be through telephone contact, correspondence or round the table. On occasions, our clients are keen to negotiate directly with their spouse and use us as a “sounding board” to ensure that the agreement being considered is fair and reasonable. In addition to being able to provide you with specialist knowledge and expertise in the strategy and conduct of negotiations, we can also offer you alternatives. These include effective arbitration and mediation.

Divorce and going to court

There will be cases when going to court to secure input from a judge is inevitable. The team at McAlister Family Law are highly experienced in attending court and putting together strategies to ensure the best possible result is obtained for you. Financial settlements ordered by the court after a divorce (whether by agreement between the couple or after a contested court hearing) usually take one of two forms:

Capital provision (which can include a payment for housing) together with ongoing maintenance (which can be for a fixed number of years), or

What is known as a “clean break” order where one capital payment (perhaps by instalments) is made, completely ending the financial relationship between a couple.

Court orders and what is considered

The court has the power to make financial awards (known as financial remedy orders) using a wide variety of mechanisms including the transfer of property, shares or other assets, the payment of cash sums and/or the sharing of a pension. This is a discretionary area of the law so there are no fixed percentages or solutions. To determine the appropriate divorce financial settlement for you, the court will follow certain specific criteria laid down by statute (section 25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973) and will consider:

  • The length of your marriage
  • Your age and state of health
  • Your family’s standard of living
  • Income, earning capacity, property and financial resources now and in the foreseeable future both in this jurisdiction and worldwide
  • Financial needs, obligations and responsibilities
  • Contributions made to the family or which will be made in the future (which includes both financial contributions and contributions in other ways, for example by caring for children)
  • The value of benefits that would be lost on divorce (and includes potential future losses and, potentially, compensation)

An overview of the court process can be seen by referring to the Finances flowchart. The McAlister Family Law divorce and finance team will advise you on the range of outcomes that a court might consider appropriate for you and your family and the different ways we can assist you in reaching a financial settlement when you are going through a divorce.

Finances Resources

Factors the court will take into account


Your options on divorce or dissolution


Dispute Resolution Options


Court Orders


Financial Settlement Factors for consideration


Pensions on Divorce or Dissolution


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