In considering a fair financial settlement, all the assets, income and other resources will need to be disclosed as the settlement will be based on the principle of equality with regard to the couple’s and children’s needs. Contrary to popular belief, there is no such thing as a ‘common law’ marriage.

A cohabitant’s claims are limited to support for children, or if the couple held or invested in property together.

A family lawyer at a firm with a wide range of expertise can be beneficial.

In particular tax, property and commercial departments often assist.

The economically stronger partner is sometimes upset by that.

There is child maintenance, and sometimes spousal maintenance, to prevent hardship to one party if they earn less than the other. Conduct of this nature will not have an impact on what a court will order in terms of finances.

There is no absolute fixed line, and the longer the marriage, the harder this can be to define.

This matrimonial capital is divided equally, whereas everything else is kept separate.If a couple is married, the law is there to protect the financially weaker spouse and any children.The law strives to ensure that all members of the family are housed and have sufficient income to live on (which might mean spousal maintenance being paid).If there are children, child maintenance will be paid and, if the other parent is wealthy, such maintenance may be substantial and cover the mother’s own needs.The mother/carer may also have housing claims on behalf of the children.Judges are not influenced by how the parties have behaved towards one another when it comes to sharing out money.