Farming and Divorce
When it comes to a divorce and finances, most case will centre around typical assets such a the family home, holiday properties, investments, pensions and so on.
Will the farm be sold?
- If the farm has been inherited through a family over generations, this can carry a significant amount of sentiment to the farm and understandably a farm owner may wish to retain their farm in a divorce and to try to protect it from being taken away from them.
- It is unusual for a divorce court to sell a business, including a farm but in a long marriage case, the starting point is to divide assets equally but care is need because:
- Not all assets are the same
- Some assets are more riskier than others eg. a farm compared to cash at bank and there will be liquidity issues
- The income from the farm may be needed to pay for outgoings eg. to support children, private school fees and so on. This is particularly important if the farm is the main source of the family’s income.
- If the farm has been inherited or the ownership structure needs to be considered (which might provide for a ring fencing argument or discount in value)
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How can I protect my farm?
- It is usually possible to come to constructive solutions without recourse to the Court. If you are able to enter into negotiations, then the complexity of the farm can be considered, and flexible solutions can be reached.
- There can be solutions to reach a fair divorce settlement, such as a separation agreement or a financial order by consent, and in an amicable way to best protect your farm.
- A pre or post nuptial agreement is a good way to attempt to protect a farm from a future divorce settlement. The types of family law agreements create the opportunity to discuss what would happen to the family farm in the event of separation and can be very persuasive when coming to a financial settlement. It can also prevent lengthy solicitor negotiations or family court proceedings at a later date. Further information can be seen here.
We are specialists in divorce and financial cases. We are ranked in Tier 1 of The Legal 500 and are leaders in our field. We work closely with our agricultural and planning teams who are specialists in looking at these issues alongside us together tax experts and specialist counsel.
Divorce finance lawyers you can trust
Maguire Family Law are experts in all aspects of divorce finance law and we can inform you of your legal rights and the strength of your case. We’ve helped so many people in so many varied situations, there’s no problem too big or small for us to assist you with.
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