helping to make change positive

Mediation and Finances

Mediation and Finances

Discussions around finances play a large part in the mediation process for many separating couples. At Rathbone Family Mediation we have wide experience in working with clients who raise issues involving:

  • pensions
  • businesses
  • property
  • debts
  • high value items

Likewise, we frequently work with clients with few or sometimes no assets who equally need to make very challenging decisions about their future financial and living arrangements.

Before ideas and options can be developed with respect to financial separation, all clients working through the divorce process must give full and frank disclosure of their financial situation, including details of:

  • assets
  • liabilities
  • income
  • future financial needs

It is important that this information is exchanged in an open way so that both you and the mediator have a clear idea of the extent of the financial landscape.

Financial Mediation

One of the challenges often involves consideration of how two people who previously relied on two incomes to run one property are now expected to run two separate properties on the same or sometimes less income than previously. This is often one of the hardest elements to work out in mediation and can create stress and anxiety in even the calmest of people.

Rathbone Family Mediation is very experienced in helping you navigate a pathway through what often feels like a daunting and unpleasant journey. We help establish what your options in such circumstances might be, and direct you to other professionals who may also be able to help. In common with all mediators, we don't give legal or financial advice but can provide examples of how other people work out similar issues. We also provide information on some of the legal aspects connected to financial separation, and how various legal processes may also assist.  

Typical issues which arise in financial mediation include:

  • child and spousal maintenance
  • debts and liabilities
  • state benefits and pensions

Discussions around property also play a large part for many of you, including:

  • whether to sell and how to divide the proceeds of sale
  • whether one party is to remain in the property and purchase the other's share, or remain there while the other retains an interest

There are no strict legal guidelines on what should or will be done on any of these financial issues except in terms of child maintenance. The Child Maintenance Service (CMS) provides a calculator that will enable you to establish what the law says should be paid, but that only provides a “back stop”. Separated families are encouraged to agree arrangements themselves without having to rely on CMS involvement.

Most financial issues are dealt with on a case-by-case basis. This is one reason why mediated proposals are often more effective and longer lasting than court-imposed decisions. You are able to craft your own agreements and take ownership of them. Such decisions can often be made legally binding via a Financial Consent Order or Separation Agreement depending on the situation. Our mediators are trained on all of these issues and have a wealth of experience in helping people deal with them.

Our goal is to help you make realistic, effective and workable decisions which are acceptable to all parties involved and which meet the needs of the family.