The End of Life Time Spousal Maintenance?
On the 3rd May Ben Gurr for The Times newspaper reported on Baroness Deech’s proposed bill for a reform of spousal maintenance.
The bill’s primary purpose appears to move the law away from life time spousal maintenance to a limited period of 5 years (this could depend upon financial circumstances). It also concentrates further on the division of assets such as property, pensions and lump sum payments by way of financial remedy.
The bill therefore hopes to reduce legal fees for divorcing couples and see an end to large payouts. It also seeks to increase opportunities for mediation and reduce the need to go to court. This in turn is hoped to will reduce the need for Judges to intervene in such cases, saving time and costs all round. Quite how such arrangements if not made the subject of a clear and binding Court Order would be enforceable has been conveniently over looked.
Prenuptial agreements would become binding under the bill in cases where legal advice had been taken.
The bill’s second reading is due to take place on the 11th May 2018.
If you are in receipt or making payments of spousal maintenance and would like to clarify how these changes may effect you please contact us for a free initial appointment.