Redundancy and Divorce: Jefferies Advises Couples Affected by Job Loss

Posted on November 06, 2019

The topic of redundancy has been very popular in the media lately. The collapse of Thomas Cook, followed by thousands of job losses, recently resulted in countless applications for redundancy relief. Besides the financial loss, redundancy can have also a negative emotional impact on those that have been let go, even taking a toll on their marriage or civil partnership.

As our specialist Family Law Solicitor Farah Naz comments:

“Many devastated families and not just employees of Thomas Cook will have been affected by the unexpected redundancies. With the added financial pressure families may face by the redundancy, particularly if one party is the main ‘breadwinner’, this may lead to the ‘cracks’ in an already troubled relationship becoming more visible”

At Jefferies, we are here for all couples considering a divorce or dissolution, and can advise you on all aspects of your life that may be affected  in the event of a redundancy. Here, our Divorce Department offers answers and guidance for everyone who finds themselves in this situation.

How does redundancy affect marriage?

For couples sharing financial responsibility of bills, having a partner face redundancy is a harrowing experience. This financial pressure can put stress on a relationship, emphasising pre-existing issues between the couple. Sadly, any children involved are also affected as a result.

Besides the financial worries associated with redundancy, losing a job can also be mentally challenging, often leaving the individual feeling like they’re at a loose end. Spending more time with their partner in this mental state can lead to more disgruntlement or bickering than usual, even leading couples to consider separation.

If you’re considering a divorce or dissolution, but would like to do this with the least conflict as possible, get in touch with one of our Solicitors for advice. Our priority is to  calmly mediate any issues throughout the process to make this as smooth as possible , achieving the best outcome for the entire family. 

Does redundancy affect divorce arrangements?

As every scenario surrounding a  divorce or dissolution is different, so is the impact of redundancy on each case. A redundancy may be taken into consideration when it comes to deciding  how the matrimonial assets are to be divided. . It really depends on what each party is willing to part with, the circumstances of the case and what is fair in the eyes of the law. That’s why it’s always recommended to have a Solicitor from the outset to discuss your redundancy and how it may affect your divorce arrangements.

There will be cases when both parties will agree on how assets will be divided, but a redundancy package can bring a new conflict into the mix that was not previously considered. For example, even when a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement has been made, couples may not have considered what to do in the unexpected event of a redundancy.

Less often, a divorce may already be underway before one of the parties is made redundant. Again, this is another factor that will need to be taken into account and factored into as part of any final agreement that is reached.   You may therefore want to clarify whom the redundancy package belongs to and how it should be divided so you are better able to plan your future. Remember, although the settlement will be reached now, before signing any orders it is important for you to ensure the agreement will be ‘doable’ and will give you the financial stability and security you had during the course of your relationship.  .

If you are worried about how redundancy can affect divorce proceedings, you should contact a Solicitor as soon as possible to take a thorough look at these documents.

Can a redundancy package be split in financial divorce settlements?

Whether or not a redundancy package will be shared between both parties in the divorce is very circumstantial, so there is no simple yes or no answer. It can depend on factors such as when the redundancy took place, how both parties have shared other assets, and what view the Courts will take.

In some situations, there can be a case to argue that the redundancy package belongs solely to the person that it was offered to. This can sometimes happen when the package was received after the separation (such as if living apart for a number of years), and when it’s clear the funds were clearly given to help that person until they find their next job. So, if you are in a circumstance where you believe your redundancy package belongs to you alone, it is best to instruct a Solicitor to aid you in securing the payment received.

In contrast, if your partner was unexpectedly made redundant and you are suffering from the consequences of it, we would urge you to seek advice on what your rights and entitlements will be to it. Unfortunately, as much as we may not like to believe it, it is often the case that one party will hide other finances or assets from the other party in a divorce. In a ‘traditional’ family arrangement one party may not have any knowledge of their partner’s financial circumstances. For the safety of yourself and your loved ones, it is critical to get a Solicitor by your side to review any agreement reached  in more depth before signing the dotted line.

How can Jefferies help you with redundancy and divorce?

Our specialist Divorce Department is experienced in dealing with redundancy and divorce issues, and is here to help you reach a ‘fair’ financial settlement, when it comes to the stressful task of deciding how your assets should be divided.  . Whether you are a couple seeking advice of the next steps, or an individual seeking confidential advice in respect of your legal rights and entitlements, we can offer you the guidance and resolve that you need to move arrangements in the right direction.

Our golden rule is to always minimise any conflict, so you can trust  us to always be impartial, honest and fair. We are particularly sensitive to cases where children are involved, and have our Family Law Department aligned to ensure your loved ones are as least affected by this as possible.

If you have been affected by redundancy and need some peace of mind at this time, contact our specialist Divorce Department on 01702 332 311 or send your enquiry here.