Going through a divorce can be a difficult time, but with the right preparation and advice, you can get through it.
We recently did a Facebook Live session with the family law team at Haldanes on Divorce and Mediation, which covered everything from minimizing the impact of the divorce on children and what is considered family assets.
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In the Facebook Live video, Haldanes address important topics such as child custody, spousal maintenance, and using a mediator.
They also dive down into topics such as what happens if the financial status of either parent changes, the benefits of mediation, and stress the importance of maintaining a relationship with your ex-spouse.
They additionally discuss the difference between going to court and using a mediator, and when to use a child psychologist, family therapist, or parent coordinator if your child is struggling.
Whether you’re considering a divorce or have already set the wheels in motion, we think this video can help you navigate this difficult period.
These are the main points of the Facebook Live interview:
All About Divorce In Hong Kong:
- While you don’t need to get a lawyer to get a divorce, as there will be court proceedings, it is strongly advised that all parties involved seek advice from a lawyer
- The ground for divorce is that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. This is due to one of five factors: adultery; one year of separation with the consent of the other party; two years of separation; unreasonable behavior or desertion
- The most common way for divorce proceedings to begin is for one spouse or the other issues a petition. It can be settled in as little as eight months, or take two years or more in complex cases
Children’s Matters To Take Into Account During Divorce In Hong Kong:
- The best way to minimize the impact of the divorce is to reach a settlement as soon as possible, ideally outside court, and to keep them informed on the progress
- Don’t bad mouth each other in front of the children and avoid arguments. Don’t ask the children to take sides
- Family therapy can help everyone cope with the process and minimize the impact. A Parental Co-ordinator can help educate both ex-spouses on co-parenting matters
Financial Matters To Take Into Account During Divorce In Hong Kong:
- The court will consider when the assets were acquired – some may not be classed as family assets and not eligible for division
- If one party has asked a family member to hold assets for them, this can be mentioned during court proceedings
- Maintenance covers spousal maintenance and child maintenance. The spouse may be entitled to some of the family assets, which can be settled as a lump sum. Child maintenance is usually given as a monthly payment until they reach 18
- You can make an application to the court to change the maintenance payment amount
Using Mediation In Hong Kong:
- A mediator is a neutral party who will help ex-partners sort things out between themselves without going to court
- If you use a mediator, you share the costs equally, whereas if you go to court each party will have their own lawyer’s fees to pay
- Mediators can be useful to arrange child custody, and are less contentious than getting a judge to decide what happens to the children
- All information shared with a mediator is confidential and can’t be shared in court
- Using a mediator doesn’t mean you can do away with court proceedings. Under Hong Kong law, the court needs to pronounce the divorce