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Don’t fall into the remarriage trap

Getting through your divorce can be a difficult and prolonged process. Even when you have your decree absolute, you may not have settled all your financial matters. This doesn’t mean that you have to put your life on hold or live like a hermit until the dust has finally settled. But if you are the respondent (that is, if it’s your ex who has filed the application for divorce), it’s usually in your best interests not to get married again until all the financial proceedings have been finalised. Wait until the financial order has been made or you have filed an application for financial relief, because getting married again bars you from making the application.

Take for example the case of E v E [2008] 1 FLR 220. The wife submitted her petition for divorce in 2003. A decree absolute was granted the same year. A draft consent order for the financial settlement wasn’t drawn up until 2005, in which the wife agreed to pay the husband £250,000. The husband remarried on 12th August 2005, a few days before the draft order was filed with the court, along with the husband’s application for ancillary relief. Because the husband had already remarried, the court had no jurisdiction to approve the consent order. The judge refused the application; the husband lost his money.

The remarriage trap can be a costly mistake. Talk to your solicitor and get proper legal advice before you do anything that could jeopardise your financial settlement.

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