Farming Divorces

Divorce is never easy but can be particularly complicated when a farming business is involved.

A farm has often been held for generations and in diverse forms of ownership, assets and resources may not be owned by the parties personally, they may be held through a limited company with numerous shareholders or through a will trust or family partnership. It is necessary to determine which assets are partnership and non-partnership assets.

Since the House of Lords case of White v White in 2010, an equal division of the assets and wealth accumulated during marriage is considered a fair divorce outcome.  This may not always be achievable for farmers because of the need to preserve assets that were owned long before the marriage, but fairness still requires financial needs to be met.

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR), such as mediation, collaboration, arbitration, and a determination to keep things amicable will assist in achieving agreement speedily and economically. The court process tends to take longer and cost more.

Our team have particular expertise helping individuals with divorce/dissolution matters involving farming families. We can help protect your financial interests whilst untangling complex financial arrangements to find a fair resolution for you and your children. We can also advise in relation to pre-nuptial agreements and post-nuptial agreements.

Our expertise includes:

  • Assisting with the negotiation of fair financial settlements, covering everything from the family home, to the division of farming/business interests and international property portfolios.
  • Providing advice about freezing orders/injunctions and working with forensic accountants where assets may have been hidden to avoid inclusion in the divorce settlement.
  • Handling the divorce or dissolution application process, including providing representation during defended divorce proceedings.
  • Providing advice about arrangements for children, including resolving disputes about upbringing, change of name and international issues.

SPEAK TO OUR specialist farming DIVORCE SOLICITORS

For expert assistance with your divorce, you can contact our local teams in BostonGranthamHorncastleLincolnLondonNewarkSleafordSpalding or Stamford.

To ask a question or request a call back at a time that suits you, please use our simple enquiry form and a member of our team will get back to you quickly.

APPLYING FOR A DIVORCE OR CIVIL PARTNERSHIP DISSOLUTION

We can handle the application of process of divorce on your behalf, including completing legal documentation, liaising with your ex-partner and their solicitor and ensuring each stage is completed within the earliest possible timeframes.

If your partner is objecting to the divorce or dissolution, we can provide practical advice about your options and help you resolve any disputes.

We are also able to help couples resolve issues of ‘jurisdiction’ where they live internationally or regularly travel.

FINANCIAL SETTLEMENTS

If you and/or your partner have an interest in farming assets, negotiating the financial settlement may understandably be making you feel particularly stressed. You will naturally want to protect your position, whether that’s keeping the assets you have worked so hard for or making sure that your ex-partner provides for you properly.

Whichever position you are in, we are here to provide all the advice and support you need. We help families negotiate amicable and fair financial settlements, covering matters such as:

  • Dividing the family home
  • Dividing savings and investments
  • Agreeing how to split bills, debts and other expenses
  • Dividing belongings, such as cars, jewellery and furniture
  • Issues relating to the farming business and assets
  • Issue relating to quotas and wind turbine agreements
  • Issues relating to pensions

We have particular experience advising individuals on divorce financial matters that commonly affect farming individuals, including:

PRE-NUPTIAL AGREEMENTS

If there is a pre-nup involved, we can advise on its terms, enforceability and your options should the terms no longer suit your needs.

Farming Interests

Dealing with farming interests upon separation can be complex. Farms are often valuable assets, but deciding how to divide or offset business interests requires careful negotiation. We can talk you through your options, protecting your position and commercial interests at every turn.

PENSIONS

We can provide advice on a range of options for sorting out pensions upon divorce or dissolution, including:

  • Pension sharing orders
  • Pension offsetting
  • Pension attachment orders

TRUSTS, INVESTMENTS AND PROPERTY PORTFOLIOS

Divorce can become particularly complex when there are high value and diverse investments involved. We can assist with negotiations involving a wide range of challenging assets and investments.

INTERNATIONAL ASSETS

International assets such as properties owned overseas can be treated as matrimonial assets just like those owned in the UK. We have experience of handling divorces involving international property, including experience working with professionals such as forensic accountants to negotiate the fair division of overseas assets.

SPOUSAL MAINTENANCE

Farming divorces often involve a significant income disparity, and questions about spousal maintenance can be difficult to resolve, particularly should disputes arise about what an ex-partner ‘needs’ to avoid hardship.

We can help couples resolve these issues, protecting your financial interests and making sure the final arrangement is fair to you.

FREEZING ORDERS AND INJUNCTIONS

If you are concerned about your ex-partner hiding, moving or undervaluing assets to prevent them being included in your divorce settlement, we can provide practical advice about your options. This could involve obtaining an Injunction to freeze their assets and prevent them from being moved, or working closely with a forensic accountant to uncover the true value of your ex-partner’s asset.

ARRANGEMENTS FOR CHILDREN

In any divorce, it is important to come to a suitable arrangement about where children will live and how much contact they will have with their non-resident parent and other members of their family, such as grandparents.

This can often be difficult for families – everyone wants what is best for the children, but often have conflicting opinions about what ‘best’ is.

Why Chattertons is the right choice for high net worth divorce advice

Divorce and dissolutions involving farming individuals have the potential to be more complex and challenging than straightforward divorces involving just a few assets such as a family home and pension.

At Chattertons, we specialise in farming divorce issues, helping families untangle their lives fairly and providing support if things get difficult. Our approach is to encourage calm, constructive discussion, making agreements that work for every member of the family out-of-court to save you time, expense and worry.

Our lawyers are members of Resolution, a family law network of professionals who dedicate their careers to helping families resolve problems without going to court. This means we follow the Resolution Code of Conduct – we will:

  • Listen to you, provide honest advice and always treat you with respect.
  • Talk you through your options clearly so you can make confident decisions about how to move forwards.
  • Help you focus on the most important things.
  • Help you weigh up costs (both financial and emotional) with what you want to achieve.
  • Work with other professionals to find the best solutions for you.
  • Help reduce stress in what is usually a stressful situation.

Further information

Our team has considerable experience of farming divorces and the unique difficulties these cases can present. It is essential that the correct strategy is adopted from the outset and our multi-disciplinary team prides itself on securing successful outcomes for clients.  We have considerable experience working with a wide range of other professionals who could prove invaluable to your divorce settlement, including specialist Counsel, financial advisors, tax advisors, accountants, land valuers, agricultural advisors and forensic accountants and, of course, we are a multi-disciplinary firm that can offer you assistance with all issues that arise from your divorce to include our Wealth Management division that can offer help and assistance with regard to tax and independent financial advice in relation to both personal and business issues.

Contact our specialist farming divorce lawyers today in Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire and London

For expert assistance with your divorce, you can contact our family law solicitors in BostonGranthamHorncastleLincolnLondonNewarkSleafordSpalding or Stamford.

To ask a question or request a call back at a time that suits you, please use our simple enquiry form and a member of our team will get back to you quickly.