Divorce Finances

When dealing with the resolution of financial issues on divorce it is essential that you can make an informed decision about how you want to resolve these matters and move forward with your financial future. If you want to secure an agreed resolution, negotiations are often more effective and more likely to result in an agreement when they are undertaken early on. From the outset it is therefore essential that you understand what types of order the court can make, the options for structuring financial settlement whilst identifying the issues for your family which will be relevant to the question of financial provision.

Statutory Criteria to which You Must have Regard

When determining what the financial settlement should be, whether by agreement or as decided by the court, it is important to understand the relevant statutory criteria set out in s25 of the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973, which refers to:

• The length of your marriage
• Your ages and state of health
• Your family’s standard of living
• Income, earning capacity, property and financial resources now and in the foreseeable future
• Financial needs, responsibilities and obligations
• Contributions financial and other made to the family historically and in the future
• Value of any benefits lost on divorce

There may be issues arising from establishing the value of some assets, valuations may be required and advice on tax may be required.

Court Approval is Vital in all Cases

If an agreement is reached then it is important to ensure that it is set out in a draft order which is then submitted to the court for approval within the divorce proceedings. A simple agreement between parties to a marriage which is not approved by the court is not a binding agreement.


We have a strong and consistent reputation advising clients in respect of financial provision. We provide advice that is clear, effective and commercial. We assist high net worth clients with complex issues, advising on the treatment of assets such as business, pensions and trusts and we advise clients with lower asset values whereby our experience is required to identify a realistic and workable solution.

Take a look at our brief guide – How to Make a Financial Settlement on Divorce – to gain an overview of the whole process.

Initial Fixed Fee Consultation

Come and talk to us. You’ll find us empathetic, keen to help and with a wealth of experience. We offer a fixed fee consultation of £120 for the first appointment. You will be advised on the options open to you and the possible outcomes. Our priority is to ensure that you have a clear understanding of the path ahead and the challenges involved in achieving your goals.

Barr Ellison Law Leading Legal 500 Firm 2024Barr Ellison Law has a small but highly esteemed family, divorce and wealth protection practice, led by Sarah Martin. Her work focuses predominantly on complex financial divorces, both UK and cross-border, and is highly regarded for her experience in private children matters. Associate Karen Anker has vast experience in financial matters, arrangements for children and relocation disputes. She also advises on also wealth protection, including pre- and post-marital agreements and cohabitation agreements. The team is praised for ‘the impeccable quality of their work and advice’.
Legal 500 Guide

‘Sarah Martin and Karen Anker provide a top class service at this firm. The quality of their work and advice is, in my view, impeccable.’

‘Sarah Martin really cares about her clients and she does in fact go the extra mile. She has complex work which she handles with real skill and diligence.’

‘A boutique team. Focus on holistic support of client when going through the process of litigation.’

‘Sarah Martin: thinking of every possible avenue a case could travel. Gives unrivalled level of support to clients. Clients always feel they have a team 100% on their side.’

‘A very experienced family team in Sarah Martin and Karen Anker. Both very well respected within the Cambridge family law community and beyond.’

‘Karen Anker is an exceptionally proactive, dedicated and extremely talented family lawyer/collaborative practitioner. Her quick mind, extensive legal knowledge and ability to think outside the box has led to her being respected as one of Cambridge’s finest collaborative practitioners. She will leave no stone unturned in pursuit of the best possible outcome for her clients.’

‘Sarah Martin is a knowledgeable, approachable and empathetic solicitor who is adept at calming any given situation. A versatile practitioner with a gentle manner that hides a steely focus to get the best for her clients.’

‘A very experienced family team in Sarah Martin and Karen Anker. Both very well respected within the Cambridge family law community and beyond.’