When a relationship breaks down

Finances and Separation

Many unmarried couples who live together are surprised to find out that they do not have the same rights as married couples when they separate. In fact, 2 in 3 of unmarried couples are not aware that there is no such thing as a ‘common law marriage’ in England and Wales, even if you have been together for many years.

Our team of expert solicitors advise separating couples from all walks of life, married and unmarried, with children and without.

Your Free Guide

Divorce and Separation

Going through a relationship breakdown can be difficult enough without confusing legal jargon and worries about the process. Our free guide walks you through the divorce process, the first 3 steps you should take, and the different routes available to get the best outcome.

If you’re married

If you are married but cannot or do not wish to Divorce, then a Separation Agreement may offer some resolution. Our family law team can draft an agreement to include important arrangements such as how your assets will be divided, who will live in your property, who will look after any children, and how much maintenance will be paid.

A Separation Agreement is a contract and is subject to the usual rules of contracts. Those who sign it should consider it an important document, which must be adhered to. Both parties should receive independent legal advice before signing it and be completely honest to avoid accusations of fraud later down the line.

If you’re not married

There are no current laws which recognise the financial needs of a separating couple if they are not married. If you are coming to an agreement on how property will be split, this will be dealt with as a property and trust issue by our expert dispute team, rather than a family law issue. Our dispute resolution team are experts in helping separating unmarried couples come to a satisfactory resolution on a variety of issues including pets, belongings, and property.

If you’re not married but have children

Child arrangements are determined by the best interests of the children in question, no matter what the marital status of their parents. Child maintenance is payable whether or not the parents were ever married. If you are separating from your partner and are concerned about your child arrangements and managing financially, speak to our friendly family law team for bespoke advice.

Daniel Mattess

Heading up our Family Law Department, Daniel is a Solicitor with a wealth of experience in Divorce and Family Law matters.

Read More About Daniel
Burt Brill & Cardens have supported me for the last two years, sorting out what at the time felt to be a complicated and nearly impossible divorce... someone as experienced, understanding, down-to-earth and highly supportive was more than I could have hoped for.

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Speak to one of our solicitors today. We would love to hear from you and discuss any legal issues you may have and how we can assist you.

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30 Old Steine, Brighton, BN1 1FL