Mediation can help separating and divorcing couples to reach agreement about their joint finances, before they seek legal advice. This can include:
- What will happen to the family home
- How any other assets will be divided
- How to deal with any debts
- What will happen to any investments, savings and pensions
Both parties will need to provide information about their income and outgoings as well as details about their assets. This will involve providing:
- A list of all income – wages, salary, benefits, etc.
- An estimate of much they are likely to spend in the future, including the cost of renting or buying a new property
- Details of any property, investments, insurance policies, pensions and savings
- Information about any debts, including loans, for which either or both of you are liable.
The mediator will use this information to help you negotiate about things such as who should live in the family home, whether it should be sold and, if so, how the money should be divided. If the property is rented, the mediator will help you negotiate about whether the tenancy needs to be changed or transferred to one of you (subject to your landlord’s agreement).
The mediator will also help you come to an agreement about maintenance and child support, including how much each parent should contribute towards the children’s upkeep (and possibly towards the other parent).
The mediator will also help you decide about future benefits, e.g. whether one partner should be compensated for the loss of the other partner’s pension rights, etc.
The decisions you reach will depend on:
- What you feel is fair – which may not necessarily mean splitting everything 50/50
- What you feel is realistic for you both and your family in your particular circumstances
- What is best for everyone, especially your children
- How your circumstances may change in the future