Clients often ask if they would be entitled to more money if they went to court over the finances. Not every case is suitable for negotiation, however we believe that on the whole, most people should settle their cases, out of court.
Why? Because going to court is expensive, time-consuming and worst of all, there is no guarantee that you will get the result you desire.
If you go to court – you are both likely to have your own solicitor – that’s the fees of two solicitors depleting the matrimonial assets by thousands of pounds. In addition to this, there will be the court fees and possibly expert fees associated with the financial disclosure, i.e. for valuations etc. These costs escalate very quickly, so you may get more if you take your case to court, but ask yourself how much of the award will you receive once you have paid your outstanding legal bills?
With Divorce Negotiator, you can both work with the same negotiator, splitting the hourly rate in half between the two of you.
Going to court is not only a slow process but it also requires a serious time commitment from both parties – even though they have instructed a solicitor to deal with the case. Don’t assume that once you have instructed a solicitor, you can just put your feet up until the hearing. The court will require detailed information about every element of your finances and the supporting documents to back-up the information (i.e. mortgage statements, bank statements, salary slips) and you will be the one who has to work hard to provide it. This information usually needs to go back at least one year and it will be your job to get it.
You may be willing to do the extra work to get a larger portion of the share, and you may be willing to wait for it. But remember, the longer the case takes to resolve, the larger your legal bill. Not to mention the time you will need to take off from work to meet court deadlines, attend hearings, respond to document production requests, and to answer questions regarding finances. So even though you are paying large sums to a solicitor to deal with the case, you will still have to take time away from work, family and other commitments.
When you negotiate with Divorce Negotiator – you resolve your situation in a fraction of the time. There is no court timetable to follow, or hearing dates to wait for. All in all, negotiations are a more efficient, and streamlined process for reaching an agreement. This means, the costs are lower and you get to keep your settlement rather than sharing it with your solicitor.
No Guarantee of what you are going to get
Even if you were willing to accept all the above and think it is worth going to court, don’t forget, there is still no guarantee as to what you will get. Ultimately, it is up to the judge and what they perceive to be fair and the chances of claiming your legal costs from your partner are very low.
But let’s say you did go to court and you were awarded a larger sum than what your partner offered – what you must ask yourself is – will it be worth it? Think of the time that it will take to push your case through the courts and how much of your settlement you will get to retain once you have paid your solicitor.
So, our message is simple. Disputes are resolved at a faster rate and at a much lower cost when they are negotiated between the parties. You will save a lot of time and money. So don’t ask ‘can I get more money if I go to court?’ ask yourself, ‘is it worth going to court to get more?’