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How does the court treat non-matrimonial assets in a divorce?

In a divorce, the court’s ultimate objective is to achieve an outcome that is ‘fair’.

The ‘sharing principle’ has developed so that in longer marriages, family assets will be divided equally between the two of you, unless a departure from equality is justified due to ‘need’ or because assets were acquired before the marriage.

The court may regard inherited assets or assets introduced externally to the marriage as ‘non-matrimonial property’. This may justify a departure from the normal sharing principles.

In making this decision, the court has wide discretion.

It will look at things like:

  • How the assets were treated during your marriage
  • The length of your marriage
  • The nature and extent of the assets
  • The way in which you organised your financial arrangements
  • When the assets came into existence
  • Whether the assets still exist
  • Whether they need to be shared to meet both or either of your needs

At Aaron & Partners, our specialist divorce solicitors will look very carefully at these issues and give timely and practical advice. By adopting sound judgment, we can argue that certain non-matrimonial assets should be excluded altogether from the ordinary sharing exercise or, conversely, included in the subsequent financial settlement.

Speak to our divorce solicitors today by completing the form below.

Key Contacts

Simon Magner Mawdsley

Simon Magner Mawdsley

Family Law Partner


Simon acts for clients in all aspects of relationship breakdowns including divorce, resolution of financial matters, civil partnerships, cohabitation disputes, pre- and post-marital agreements, injunctions, and children matters.

Lorraine Saunders

Lorraine Saunders

Family Law Partner

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Neil Hobden

Neil Hobden

Family Law Partner

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Richard Barge

Richard Barge

Partner | Head of Family Law

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