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Family Law Blog

Comment on divorce & family law 

Second time around

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Maybe I am too protective of our past clients?

But I do worry about a recently divorced person going into a second time around relationship. Getting a divorce is tough. Going into an unwise new relationship must be devastating to emotions but also finances.

Actually getting married again is often off the agenda as a matter of principle for some. Of course some divorced people simply live together (cohabit) and that is fine if the legal implications are understood.

• If they both contribute to the mortgage, who owns the house on the end of the relationship and is the one who doesn't entitled to some funds? Quite probably not, under present law.

• How about maintenance? Not if after just living together.

If just living together do consider a careful living together agreement. It costs a few hundred pounds but could save many thousands in legal fees.

Do take second time around seriously. Quite apart from the normal issues, there are potential big effects upon your existing financial settlement and Court orders (especially maintenance), maybe effects upon a delayed order for sale of the former matrimonial home, what about inheritance rights of the children if you remarry?.

To sum up, before taking that "getting together" step once more, do ask:

1. Your best friend
2. Your family lawyer

Of course, after the length of some divorces, 1 and 2 might well be the same person!

Andrew Woolley
Family lawyer

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