Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Is your ex Co-Habiting?

Quite often there is a debate between divorcing couples as to whether their ex spouse is cohabiting or not. In a divorce if you are found to be cohabiting, in what is termed established Co-Habitation - usually 6 months or longer- then your cohabitee’s income and assets can be taken into account in the division of assets and included in an assessment as to whether regular maintenance should be paid.

The typical questions asked are:

1.       Which days of the week do you stay at each others house?  Assuming your partner has a separate house, surprisingly often they do not and this question is simply not asked.
2.     If the amount of time you see each other has adjusted in the last 6 months please explain how it has changed?

3.       How are everyday costs as food, entertainment, holidays and travel shared by you and your partner?

4.       Where does your partner work geographically?

5.       Has your partner helped you with any of your regular expected outgoings and bills? If so, in what way?

6.       Has your partner accompanied you to any GP, hospital or consultancy appointments?

7.       Are you and your partner involved with each others families?  Have you been to any family events?

8.       Have you or your partner had any relationship with anyone else in the last two years?

Friday, February 22, 2013

How will you access Publicly Funded Mediation after April 1st?

The vast majority of Publicly Funded Mediation clients are referred to a Mediator via their Publicly Funded solicitor. Currently the solicitor is paid a fee by the Legal Services Commission for doing so. That fee will no longer exist from April 1, 2013.

How then will they find a Mediator? Will solicitors take their instructions and refer them on for free? Will they find the Mediator via Google? Citizens Advice ?

The Government has not signposted this properly.

Perhaps the courts will issue a leaflet pointing people towards free Mediation. By the time people access the court system however they have already issued their Divorce Petition.

Perhaps the new system will simply flow without the chaos envisaged by the majority of people working within it.

Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Ban Gay Marriage?

I am listening to the debate in Parliament in the background and I am bored now.

I haven't been to a wedding for ages.  Marriage is on the decline. More and more people are choosing to live together. David Cameron is trying to encourage Marriage in his Big Society so it is not surprising that he supports Gay Marriage.

Seems that this is a generation thing.  Older people object more.

Civil Partnership Agreement sounds boring. How do they refer to each other "My civil partner?"

Is it logical to ban Gay Marriage? I think not. The argument about sexual intercourse I find especially bizarre. You don't have to be married to have sexual intercourse so holding this out as a pre requisite for marriage is to me a form of discrimination.

This is the last vestige of religious oppression to my mind.  On Radio 4 this morning they interviewed a woman in her 70s who had been a slave in a Catholic Convent Laundry until she was 23.  The cruelty she described was heart breaking. The Catholic Church needs to focus on spreading kindness and sorting out their problems.  Religion has got a lot of bad press recently.  The Church of England needs to embrace all members of our society and reverse its decline in numbers.

Gay marriage - A marker for equality... I agree.