Clean Break Divorce: 5 Key Benefits

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Ending a relationship is never easy and divorcing couples often wish to make divorce proceedings as easy and straightforward as possible. Achieving clean break divorce is often the best way for couples to move on from the relationship, removing any ties with the other person.

What is a clean break divorce?

A clean break divorce order is a type of financial settlement where the parties agree to have a permanent termination of all financial ties between them. It means that neither party will have any ongoing financial claims against the other, and that all assets and liabilities are divided and settled in full. This type of settlement is often preferred by couples who want to move on from their marriage without any future financial obligations to each other.

When a financial clean break order is approved by the court and obtained by the parties, this means that neither party will be entitled to obtain spousal maintenance payments. The court order must state that a clean break has been agreed and it must set out the financial agreement between the parties.

The benefits of obtaining a clean break divorce

There are several benefits of obtaining a clean break divorce order in England, including:

  • Clarity and finality: A clean break order provides clarity and finality to the financial arrangements following the divorce, allowing both parties to move on without the worry of future financial claims.
  • Simplicity: A clean break order can simplify the divorce process by resolving all financial matters in one go, rather than leaving them open for future negotiation.
  • Flexibility: A clean break order can be tailored to suit the specific needs and circumstances of each individual case, which can provide greater flexibility in the divorce settlement.
  • Speed: Obtaining a clean break order can speed up the divorce process, as all financial matters are settled in one go, rather than being left open for future negotiation.
  • Cost savings: A clean break order can reduce legal costs associated with the divorce process, as there is no need for ongoing negotiations or court proceedings.
  • Overall, a clean break divorce order can provide clarity, simplicity, flexibility, speed, and cost savings for both parties involved in the divorce.

How to obtain this type of divorce order

To obtain a clean break divorce order, the following steps should be followed:

  • Reach agreement: The first step in obtaining a clean break divorce order is to reach an agreement with your spouse on the terms of the settlement, including the division of assets and liabilities. This can be done through negotiations, mediation, or with the help of solicitors.
  • Draft a consent order: A consent order is a legal document that sets out the terms of the divorce settlement. It should include details of the assets and liabilities to be divided, and should be drafted with the help of a solicitor.
  • Submit the consent order to the court: The consent order must be submitted to the court for approval. The court will review the order to ensure that it is fair and reasonable.
  • Obtain the court’s approval: Once the court has approved the consent order, it becomes a legally binding agreement, and a clean break divorce order, a type of final order.
  • Implement the agreement: The final step is to implement the agreement by dividing assets and liabilities as specified in the consent order. This may involve transferring property, paying off debts, making a lump sum payment or making other arrangements.

It is important to note that a clean break divorce order can only be obtained if both parties agree to it, and that the court must be satisfied that it is fair and reasonable. It is also important to seek the advice of a solicitor, who can guide you through the process and ensure that your rights and interests are protected.

How can expert Family Law assist?

The divorce solicitors on our panel provide expert legal advice on all types of divorces from clean break clauses to other types of financial orders in divorce.

We ensure our panel firms have the skills and experience required to assist on your legal case. We can assure you that your case will be dealt with in a compassionate and understanding manner.

The solicitors on our panel can assist you through the process of divorce, including the application, as well as assisting you with child arrangements, financial settlements and ancillary relief following the termination of your marriage.

Get in touch today using the form at the top of the page to find out if a divorce solicitor from our panel could help on your case.

Clean Break Divorce FAQs

Can a clean break order include provisions for children?

A clean break order specifically deals with the financial ties between spouses and does not directly address child support or custody arrangements. Child maintenance is a separate issue and can be agreed upon separately or through the courts, as the welfare of the children remains a priority.

What if one party does not agree to a clean break?

If one spouse does not agree to a clean break, the divorce settlement will require negotiations or mediation to reach a mutual agreement. If an agreement still cannot be reached, the court may need to intervene and make a decision based on the financial circumstances of both parties.

Are there any risks associated with a clean break divorce?

One potential risk is that future changes in circumstances (such as illness or significant financial changes) will not allow for any new claims for financial support from an ex-spouse, as all financial ties are severed. Therefore, it’s crucial to consider long-term implications before agreeing to a clean break.

Can a clean break order be overturned?

Once a clean break order is made final by the courts and both parties have agreed to it, it is generally binding and cannot be easily overturned. Exceptions might occur if the order was obtained through fraud, non-disclosure of assets, or a significant mistake. Legal advice is essential when considering these issues.

How long does it take to process a clean break order?

The time it takes to process a clean break order can vary depending on the complexity of the financial matters involved and how quickly both parties can reach an agreement. Once submitted, if the court finds the agreement fair and all paperwork is in order, the approval can be relatively swift.

How does a clean break differ from other financial settlements in a divorce?

Unlike other financial settlements that might leave open the possibility of future claims, a clean break completely ends any financial dependence between the parties. Other settlements might involve ongoing spousal maintenance or deferred lump sum payments.

Is a solicitor required to obtain a clean break order?

While not legally required, it is highly advisable to engage a solicitor to ensure that all financial aspects are thoroughly considered and properly documented before submitting a clean break order for court approval. A solicitor can help draft the consent order and ensure it meets legal standards to prevent future disputes.


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