A divorce lawyer’s role in a matrimonial separation

In previous generations, marriages were more or less permanent. But in the last 30 years, more and more couples have been seeking matrimonial separation and sometimes not once but numerous times. Approximately one-third of marriages and de facto relationships end up in divorce according to NZ Government statistics. This article looks at the assistance you can get from a matrimonial separation or, more commonly known as, a divorce lawyer.

Silverdale divorce lawyer

Couple arguing – image David Castillo Dominici

One of the main causes of this is the divorce laws that make it easier to not only separate but for both parties to share the matrimonial assets. In years gone by the split of matrimonial property was not equal which encouraged or even forced one party to stay in an unhappy relationship.

Nevertheless, a separation is still a messy business both financially and emotionally, and so people are well advised to become familiar with the issues before deciding to finally separate. This article aims to shed some light on some of those factors concerning a separation, but does not substitute for professional legal advice. Consult your lawyer for formal legal direction.

Think deeply before separating

Given the high costs of a marital separation, it is highly advisable to have a go at salvaging a relationship. The financial costs are obvious but the emotional toll can be huge. It is often said that it takes two years to get over a divorce.

There are various options couples can look at such counseling and mediation services which are available in Orewa, Silverdale and Warkworth. You can find them on the Internet as well. The most popular is to use the services of a marriage counselor. A counselor can try to establish the sore points in a relationship and try to work out a livable solution.

If separation is the only way forward

The first thing to do if you arrive at this point is to consult a divorce lawyer for Warkworth. They will advise you of your rights since it is still common for one party to try to claim more than they are financially entitled to from the relationship. The other party will probably be using a solicitor too so it makes sense that you also have similar legal advice.

Property ownership in separation

Legal advice

– image Stuart Miles

In the past men frequently were awarded a greater proportion of the assets built up in a marriage. Conversely, there are many stories of men being financially crippled due to maintenance and child support payments.  The women were given custody of the children and child support was paid to meet their needs.

However, these days in New Zealand, both the spouses are given equal rights to the total relationship property built up during their time together. This requires the valuation and division of all properties, savings and other financial assets. It also includes the valuation of any business too. So it is important to employ a lawyer to come to a fair valuation of the property and to divide the estate in an equitable manner.

Child support and child custody

There are very strong laws and practices that govern the handling of children in marriage separation. Child support in NZ is based on the income of the individuals and the number of children being covered by the support payments. The figures are publicly available and the IRD has a tool to calculate the child support payments that should be made.

Tony Coupe – Divorce and Relationship Property lawyer

As regard custody of any children, it is best if the parents can agree who will be the custodian. This makes it much easier on the children. However access must be granted on a fair basis to the other parent. If this cannot be agreed, the Family Court will make a ruling. Their concern is the best interest of the children. However, as this is such a difficult issue, it is a very good idea to talk with a family court lawyer covering the Hibiscus Coast area.


A matrimonial break-up is charged with emotions which mean that people are not able to think clearly. One party will often try to bully the other into accepting a separation agreement below their entitlement. To make sure this does not happen to you, consult a divorce lawyer who covers Orewa or Silverdale to help with your matrimonial separation and relationship property.

Divorce lawyer for Orewa


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