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The division of finances is often one of the most challenging aspects of a divorce, with the possibility to lead to disagreements and feelings of confusion, anger and upset, and in some cases, bitterness and dishonesty.
In some divorce scenarios, one spouse may wish to hide their assets in order to prevent their spouse or civil partner from being entitled to them, but there are ways to prevent this from happening. This is to ensure the division of assets is fair and meets both parties and any children’s needs.
At Glanvilles, our team of freezing order and injunctions solicitors understand how difficult and emotionally charged divorce proceedings can be, particularly in concern of the division of finances.
If you are facing such a situation where there is a concern about your spouse concealing their finances, our solicitors have the expertise you need for freezing assets and ensuring your spouse’s entire financial position is revealed during the division of finances. We can also assist where assets have already been disposed of with an avoidance of disposition order, set out under s37 Matrimonial Causes Act.
Our team have worked with a wide range of clients in such positions, including those with more complicated matters, for example, a higher net worth. We provide a bespoke service tailored specifically to your circumstances, ensuring you have the best chance of success.
When you instruct our injunction solicitors, we will provide sound advice and assistance with all types of freezing order and injunction matters, including:
Working with our team guarantees a thorough review of your situation and the outcome you are seeking. Doing so allows our team to personalise our advice and guidance to align with what you are facing and the support you require. We strive to provide you with close personal support and create strong professional relationships in doing so.
Freezing orders, or sometimes known as injunctions, are issued by the court where there is concern that one spouse or civil partner during a divorce is attempting to dispose or deal with their assets before an outcome has been determined. The freezing order will prevent them from being able to do this.
Generally speaking, when a freezing order is granted by the court it will typically cover all of the respondent’s assets but does sometimes cover a specific value. Should the respondent also have assets located outside of the UK, whether the asset is covered will depend on the jurisdiction of the country they are held in.
Examples of assets covered by a freezing order include:
A freezing order can also cover assets that you do not yet have. An example of this could include an inheritance, imminent compensation, etc.
If you have any concerns or have been threatened by your spouse that they are going to attempt to conceal anything during the division of finances, you can make an application to the court for a freezing order to be issued. This can be done without notifying your spouse or civil partners and is known as an order ‘without notice’.
Once an application has been submitted, you may be required to attend a court hearing where your case will be carefully assessed before a decision is made.
At Glanvilles, we recognise the complications you may face when applying for a freezing order. Should you move forward with instructing our team, we can provide clear, informative advice on the steps involved and, after carefully assessing your situation, the likelihood of a successful application.
Should we recognise that a freezing order application is in your best interest, our family law team will assist with the application process and provide representation during any court proceedings that are required.
When a freezing order is initially granted by the court, they will typically grant it on a time basis of between 7 and 14 days. However, in certain circumstances where the court has deemed the situation more complicated and of higher risk of your spouse or civil partner concealing assets, they may choose to grant the order for a prolonged period. This is often done with a hearing in place first, where both you and your spouse or civil partner will be invited to attend.
Once a freezing order has been granted and put in place by the court, it is legally binding, and any attempt to breach the freezing order, for example, hiding assets, can amount to contempt of court and could be considered a criminal offence. The potential penalties for breach of a consent order include fines, seizure of assets and, in some more significant cases, lead to prosecution.
Applying for a freezing order is often a complicated process and is only granted in limited circumstances. Additionally, getting a freezing order can be more complex, where certain assets your spouse or civil partner has are located overseas and under a different jurisdiction.
For the best chance of success, seeking the advice and guidance of an experienced and skilled freezing order and injunctions solicitor is encouraged. They will be able to provide guidance throughout the process, including on your chance of success.
Our team of specialist freezing injunctions solicitors have a wealth of collective expertise assisting clients through difficult family circumstances, including with a wide range of issues relating to freezing orders and injunctions. We can assist with providing advice on your rights and the suitability of an order, applying to the court for a freezing order, breaches of freezing order, etc.
Our excellent service across the whole family law team has been recognised through a number of accreditations and awards, including the Family Law Advanced accreditation and the Lexcel accreditation, both awarded by the Law Society.
For our client’s reassurance in our ability, many members of the team, including Senior Associate Charlotte Woodhouse, are also members of Resolution, a network of family lawyers dedicated to seeking collaborative approaches to family law matters.
When you use our freezing orders and injunctions service, we promise: