What is an Occupation Order?

An occupation order is a type of order that the court can make, that regulates who is entitled to live in a property. An occupation order can:

  • Exclude someone from the home altogether,
  • Restrict the right of someone to live in the home
  • Regulate how the home is used – setting out who can use which parts of the home and when
  • Define who is responsible to maintain the home
  • Who should pay rent, mortgage instalments, other outgoings and bills
  • Who should keep the home and contents secure.

What is a Non-Molestation Order?

A non-molestation order prohibits someone from behaving in a certain way towards another person. Each non-molestation order will be tailored to address individual circumstances. If you have applied for a non-molestation order it can, among other things:

  • Forbid violence against you
  • Prohibit someone coming within specified distance of you, your home or your place of work
  • Prohibit someone from communicating with you, except through your solicitors.

What is mediation?

Mediation is when an independent and professionally trained mediator helps you work out an agreement with your former partner about issues such as: 

  • Childcare arrangements
  • Finances- including pensions, dividing your assets and financial support
  • Houses and property – such as your family home, or buy to let investments 

How does divorce or family law mediation work?

In the first session known as a MIAM (Mediation Information and Assessment Meeting) you will have an opportunity to meet the mediator individually and the process will be explained to you. After you have both attended an individual meeting, there will be a first joint meeting with the mediator.  They will then get you and your partner to talk in a constructive way, and encourage you to start looking at options and ideas. In this way they are often able to help you find a workable solution, and one that can become part of a legal document.

A mediator's role is not to advise the parties, and you may benefit from independent legal advice alongside mediation.

What is a post-nuptial agreement?

A post-nuptial agreement is a legal document which sets out how a couple’s assets should be divided if they get divorced. Couples can enter into a post-nuptial agreement any time after they have married or entered into a civil partnership.

What can be included in a post-nuptial agreement?

Post-nuptial agreements usually cover things like:

  • Finances, including financial support
  • Pensions, investments and other significant assets
  • Business interests.

What is a deed of separation?

A deed of separation is a legal agreement that formalises the terms of your separation. They are usually used when parties separate but do not intend to divorce immediately.  A solicitor can help you make a deed of separation that covers important issues, such as your finances, property and children. You should be aware that separation agreements are not strictly binding in the same way as a commercial agreement, but a court may uphold their terms.  You should take advice from a solicitor if you think a separation agreement might be for you.

What is a judicial separation?

A judicial separation is similar to a divorce but leaves you legally married. It is a formal separation which goes through the courts. A solicitor can help you apply for a judicial separation.

What is a pre-nuptial agreement?

A pre-nuptial agreement is a legal document that sets out who gets what if you get divorced or dissolve your civil partnership. Your pre-nuptial agreement should be signed at least 28 days before the date of your marriage/civil partnership.

What can be included in a pre-nuptial agreement?

Examples of assets a pre-nuptial agreements cover are:

  • Your finances – including pensions, investments and financial support
  • Houses and property – such as your family home, or buy to let investments
  • Your business interests – if you own your own business or shares
  • Valuable possessions – such as cars, antiques and family heirlooms.

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