1. Discuss how you will tell your children.
It is best if you both do it together, agree a time and a place and decide what you will say to the children. This will depend on their ages. The children need reassurance that their parents still love them and that they are in no way to blame for the separation.
2. Agree arrangements about how you will spend time with your children after separation.
This should have an element of flexibility to fit in with work and other commitments. It should include quality time sharing birthdays and public holidays. If the children are old enough, you can ask their views. If it is not possible to agree these arrangements then we advise you to attend mediation with a skilled mediator. The meetings will take place in a neutral environment. The mediator will not give legal advice but will try and assist you in reaching an agreement which is best for your family.
3. Separation is an emotional time, you do not want to be on your own. Make sure you have a ‘shoulder to cry on’, a friend or family member to give you support.
4. Draw up a spreadsheet detailing your incomes and financial outgoings. If you require a financial contribution from your husband then it is far easier to justify the amount you are seeking if you can show him how much you need to pay the bills. The child maintenance service will provide you with details of how much your husband should be paying by way of child support. However, it is far better to discuss finances and agree on figures.
5. Check to find out if you are entitled to any benefits e.g. universal credit.
6. Apply for a reduction in your council tax as soon as you are a single household.
7. Change your passwords and create a new personal email if you do not have one.
8. If your salary is paid into a joint account, open an account in your own name into which it can be paid.
9. Cancel contracts that you do not need e.g. sky sports.
10. If the matrimonial home is in your husband’s sole name, register a home right’s notice.
11. If the matrimonial home is in joint names, sever the joint tenancy so that in the event of your death, your half of the property does not pass to your husband under the rule of survivorship.
12. If you do not want you husband to benefit under your pension scheme, contact your pension trustees and make a nomination in favour of someone else.
13. Make a new will.
14. Call us and we will advise you and discuss your options.
If you would like to find out more information about the issues raised above, please contact Susan Taylor. 0161 883 0460 or email email@example.com