If you are going through a divorce and endeavouring to agree financial matters with your spouse you will usually be expected to provide them, or their solicitor, with information about your financial position. This is known as ‘financial disclosure’.
Financial disclosure can either be done on a voluntary basis, negotiated through solicitors or in mediation. If you are involved in court proceedings you are required to provide financial disclosure and this must be done using a form E.
It is important to provide clear and comprehensive information when you give financial disclosure. If your spouse does not have an understanding of your financial position they may be unwilling to enter into an agreement and court proceedings may become necessary. During court proceedings, you can be forced to provide information or otherwise face court sanctions. It is also important for your solicitor to understand your financial circumstances so that they can give you comprehensive and accurate advice.
With this in mind, you will surely want to make sure you have all your documents. To help you out Slater and Gordon’s expert Family Law Solicitors have prepared a list of the different types of documents you’ll need to provide for financial disclosure:
• If you own property and have a valuation from within the last six months this should be provided. If not, it can be useful to invite 2/3 estate agents to give their view as to market value. This is something you should discuss with your divorce solicitor.
• If any of the property is subject to mortgage you’ll need to produce a recent mortgage statement.
• If the property it subject to a trust the trust deed will need to be provided.
Bank Accounts and Investments
• Bank statements – you will need bank statements which cover the past 12 months and not just for you main account but for all accounts in which you have an interest. This includes all accounts in your sole name, held with another in joint names or an account held for your benefit.
• A current valuation will need to be produced for any Individual Savings Accounts, Personal Equity Plans or other saving accounts you might have.
• If you hold shares you a dividend counterfoil or other proof will be required to evidence the extent of your shareholding.
• If you hold life assurance policies surrender values must be produced or evidence that the policy has no value.
If you have an interest in a business either as a shareholder, partner or sole trader you will need to produce:
• Accounts for the last 2 years
• Any other documents in support of the valuation you provide
A cash equivalent transfer value (CETV) needs to be provided. If you have one which is less than 12 months old this can be used otherwise one will need to be requested. Please be aware these can often take many weeks or months to be produced by pension companies so it is good to make the request as soon as possible.
The documents you will need to provide in support of your income position will depend on the source of that income but often include:
• Your last three wage slips.
• P60 for the most recent completed financial year.
• A copy of your tax returns for the last two tax years.
Form E is the most important document used in the financial divorce process. Find out what makes form E so important here.
If both people going through a divorce provide all these documents it will offer the best opportunity of reaching a swift resolution of financial matters. With these documents shared your Family Law Solicitor will be well equipped to negotiate your settlement.
For an initial consultation call the family solicitors at Slater and Gordon Lawyers UK on freephone 0800 916 9055 or contact us online and we will call you.