When you need us…

Financial matters can be a stumbling block in many relationship breakdowns. Our family team have a wealth of experience in guiding clients through what is potentially a stressful time.

Whether married or living together, family financial issues can be complex and require legal expertise and know-how when it comes to unpicking these difficult situations.

The team has extensive experience in handling a wide range of financial issues including matters relating to:

  • The family home
  • Finances of high net-worth individuals
  • Investment portfolios
  • 3rd party interests in property
  • Protection (injunction) orders to preserve assets and avoid disposition
  • Pensions
  • Business interests
  • Pre-nuptial and separation agreements
  • Co-habitation disputes
  • Claims against property interests of partners
  • Financial claims for and on behalf of children
  • Trust of Land claims
  • sch1 Children Act claims

Giving relevant and accurate advice, the family team’s supportive approach is welcomed by clients who appreciate their input in helping them reach a satisfactory outcome.


Registered in England, we offer specialist family law services throughout the country. In addition, many members of our team have been recognised by The Law Society and Resolution as being experts in their field. We've also been recognised by the Legal 500, which describes us as:

Head of family practice, Ruth Jones, routinely advises on the financial aspects of relationship breakdowns, prenuptial/cohabitation contracts and cases involving minors. Solicitors Adele Woods and Emma Hennessy are also noted.

The breadth of experience and knowledge within the family team make it the go to firm within the area for advice on complex legal issues.

The Legal 500, 2023

Contact our team today

To find out how our expert team of solicitors can help you, contact us today on 0330 123 1229, send us an email via info@smithpartnership.co.uk or complete our contact form.


This will depend on the circumstances of your case. Generally speaking, the court does like to try and achieve a clean break i.e. a dismissal of both parties’ claims including for maintenance when a marriage breaks down, however this is not always possible. If for example one party has put their career on hold and brought up the children/run the home, whilst the other party has been able to develop their career and is now earning a high salary, then the stay at home party may well be entitled to spousal maintenance. Unlike child maintenance, there is no formula, the main test is does one party need any money and if so does the other party have the resources i.e. disposable income to pay. If they do not have the resources, then, even if one party needs the money maintenance may not be paid. The court has a variety of powers open to them including giving maintenance for a fixed period of time, or possible joint lives orders. The court can also give nominal maintenance orders which mean that there is no absolute clean break and the party, normally the parent with care of young children, has the ability to apply to the court in the future for maintenance should their circumstances change.

Often the answer to this is yes. Pensions are normally included as assets in divorce financial settlements, and they are often the biggest asset in terms of value. It is important that you get a good understanding of your pension entitlement and the impact of any divorce settlement upon your pension benefits. There is no automatic principle of division, it may depend on how long you have been together compared to how long you have been in the pension scheme. It may depend on whether or not one of you has been out of the working environment bringing up a family and therefore not able to contribute to their own pension. The way the matrimonial pot, including pensions, is divided between you and your partner would be decided either by agreement between the two of you or by the courts and would be based on factors such as the financial needs of each party as well as the length of the marriage.

There are a variety of ways that pensions can be dealt with, a common way is pension sharing whereby pension funds are divided so that both parties have a separate fund in their respective names. Sometimes there is pension offsetting which can involve one party transferring a proportionally larger share of their liquid assets to one party in return for their pension being left alone. Pensions are a highly complex area of law and frequently advice from actuaries must be taken.