2. If you agree
You don’t have to do any official paperwork if you agree about how to divide your money and property. But your agreement won’t be legally binding, which means a court can’t enforce it.
If you want to make your agreement legally binding, a solicitor can help with the paperwork.
Making your agreement legally binding
You need to get a solicitor to draft a ‘consent order’ and ask a court to approve it - this makes it legally binding.
A consent order is a legal document that confirms your agreement. It explains how you’re going to divide up assets like:
It can also include arrangements for maintenance payments, including child maintenance.
Deadlines for making a consent order
You can ask the court to approve your consent order if both of the following apply:
- you’ve started the paperwork to divorce or end your civil partnership
- you haven’t yet applied for the final legal document to end the relationship
The final legal document is the:
Asking the court for approval
You and your ex-partner both have to sign the draft consent order.
Both of you also need to fill in:
Send these forms with your draft consent order to the court dealing with your paperwork to divorce or end your civil partnership. Keep your own copies.
A consent order costs £50.
You may be able to get help with court fees if you’re on benefits or a low income.
After you ask the court for approval
There’s usually no court hearing. A judge will approve your consent order to make it legally binding if they think it’s fair.
If they don’t think it’s fair, they can:
- change your consent order
- make a new court order to tell you how to divide your money and property