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Being Full and Frank

When it comes to the separation of financial matters following divorce, you will undoubtedly be concerned as to what steps to take next, let alone what information you think you need to provide to your matrimonial solicitor at your initial appointment.

It is in your interest to provide as much information at the outset so that you can utilise the time with your solicitor accordingly.  Therefore, you may begin beforehand and in advance of the meeting with a gathering of information exercise.  Any information you hold relating to your financial affairs will, of course, assist your solicitor and provide to them a much clearer picture in the long-run.

However, should you come across information which was not addressed to you (e.g. your partner instead), and you feel this may be of interest to you, simply taking that information to your solicitor to assist your case, could cause you and your solicitor problems.

In essence, and by no ways is this an exhaustive explanation, since the reporting of the Court of Appeal decision in 2010, ‘any information that a client possesses which is addressed not to them, will raise suspicion by a family lawyer’.  You may face questioning as to how you came into possession of that information, as it may potentially attract a form of protection owed to the owner.   And a result the owner could potentially seek an Injunction and/or costs as a result of the taking of such personal information.

Therefore, in adopting the correct procedure by way of asking for ‘full and frank disclosure’, each party is asked to disclose information throughout the case to the other side and the court.  It is what is known as an ongoing duty, to ensure at the end of the day the correct result is received based on up-to-date figures.

If you are in doubt, it is best to seek advice from your solicitor, before acting with haste.