Q&As

A financial consent order was sent to the court, but the court’s approval was refused as the order was not considered to be a fair settlement for one party. That party had proceeded with the initial agreement against legal advice. Can the terms of the order be renegotiated with the other party, and a revised consent order submitted to the court? If so, is the procedure the same as on the submission of the original consent order? Could the other party seek to argue that the terms of the original agreement should be binding?

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Published on LexisPSL on 02/03/2018

The following Family Q&A provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A financial consent order was sent to the court, but the court’s approval was refused as the order was not considered to be a fair settlement for one party. That party had proceeded with the initial agreement against legal advice. Can the terms of the order be renegotiated with the other party, and a revised consent order submitted to the court? If so, is the procedure the same as on the submission of the original consent order? Could the other party seek to argue that the terms of the original agreement should be binding?

The court's role when considering a draft financial consent order is not simply to act as a rubber stamp. The court has a duty to scrutinise the agreement before it, but may make an order in the terms agreed on the basis of the information set out in the parties' statements of information, unless it has reason to believe that there are other circumstances into which it should enquire. The court will always retain its discretionary role under the Matrimonial Causes Act 1973. Clients should be advised of this and warned that it is not guaranteed that the court will approve the order (see Pounds v Pounds).

The procedure for lodging a financial consent order is set out in Family Procedure Rules 2010 (FPR 2010)

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