Clean Break Order Explained
A Clean Break Order effectively draws a line under the division of assets after your divorce. Once a Clean Break Order has been issued by the Court, it means that no claim can be made on any of your assets in future and you can’t make a claim against your former partner’s assets either. This will include all capital and property you own as well as protection your income and pension from further attack and any future inheritances or wind-falls, such as a lottery win.
However, there are limitations to obtaining a Clean Break Order. If you or your former partner still have an ongoing financial obligation to the other, you may not be able to achieve a Clean Break Order. For example and usually after a very long marriage, if there is a considerable discrepancy in incomes, then the Court will consider making an spousal maintenance order. The Court can also defer a clean break on capital and inheritance as well and usually do so if there is a maintenance order.
It is important to realise the Court needs only to consider if a clean break is suitable in the circumstances. It is under no obligation to make one.
Clean Break Orders are useful in situations where the marriage ended after only a few years and each party can live financially independent of the other: say where both are working and any capital or other assets can be split between them fairly.
If you have children, this in itself will not prevent you achieving a clean break. The payment of maintenance for your children can be agreed between you and included in any order or failing that the Child Maintenance Service deals with any claim.
Even if you think you have no money now and so don’t need any type of order, times and fortunes change. With a simple Clean Break Order, dismissing any claim for financial provision either of you may have against the other, now or at any time in the future, you are insuring there will be no nasty surprises down the line.