What is a Property Adjustment Order in divorce proceedings?

Property Adjustment Order

In England and Wales, a Property Adjustment Order is a legal order issued by the court during divorce or dissolution proceedings that determines how the family home or other properties will be divided or transferred between the parties involved. It is designed to address the financial aspects of the separation and ensure a fair and equitable distribution of property assets.

A Property Adjustment Order can be made in various situations, including:

  1. Transfer of Property: The court may order the transfer of ownership of a property from one party to the other. For example, if the family home is registered in one party’s name, the court can order that it be transferred to the other party as part of the financial settlement. 
  2. Sale of Property: In some cases, the court may order the sale of a property and the division of the proceeds between the parties. This can be necessary when it is not feasible or practical for one party to retain ownership of the property. 
  3. Deferred Sale: In certain circumstances, the court may order a deferred sale of the property. This means that one party can continue to live in the property for a specified period, such as until the youngest child reaches a certain age or completes education. After the specified period, the property will be sold, and the proceeds divided between the parties.

The court will consider various factors when making a Property Adjustment Order, including the financial needs and resources of each party, the welfare of any children involved and any other relevant circumstances. The aim is to achieve a fair and reasonable outcome that takes into account the individual circumstances of the case.

It is important to note that the court has broad discretion when making Property Adjustment Orders, and the specific outcome will depend on the unique circumstances of each case. It is essential to seek legal advice from a specialist family law solicitor who can guide you through the process, help you present your case effectively to the court, and ensure that your rights and interests are protected, even exploring the possibility as to whether a clean break is advisable thus ensuring no further claims in the future.

It is also worth noting that the court’s primary consideration is the welfare of any children involved. Therefore, if there are dependent children, the court will prioritise their housing needs and stability when making decisions regarding property division.

If you are considering divorce or have already commenced down that road and have any questions about the process or specifically Property Adjustment Orders, why not contact one of Alexander JLO’s  expert divorce lawyers on 020 7537 7000 or email peter@london-law.co.uk for a free, no obligation consultation and see what we can do for you?


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