top of page
  • Writer's pictureEddison Cogan Legal Team

Case Study of the Outcome of Financial Agreement Mediation

Updated: May 13

Julian Bristol* and Vivianne Bristol*  

*Names and details have been changed to protect confidentiality 


Julian and Vivianne have been in mediation with Christopher Eddison-Cogan with the aim of resolving the financial settlement following the end of their marriage. This memorandum (MoU) is a final summary of the outcome of mediation. Following individual preliminary MIAMs to assess the suitability for mediation, there have been three in-person mediation session, held on 12 December 2023, 14 January 2024 and 24 January 2024 at the offices of The Dispute Clinic at 14 Whiteladies Road, Clifton, Bristol BS8 1PD, followed by subsequent correspondence and telephone calls with the parties.  


This summary does not record or create a binding agreement between Julian and Vivianne but is intended to be produced in court as evidence of the parties’ intentions in relation to their application for Consent Orders.  


The mediator, a solicitor regulated by the SRA with experience and qualifications in family law, has recommended that each of the parties obtain independent professional advice from a solicitor in relation to this MoU, but the parties have indicated that they want to proceed with this agreement and have it expressed in draft Consent Orders for consideration by a Judge of the Family Court sitting in private.  


Although the agreement is therefore not legally binding, both Julian and Vivianne intend to act in accordance with the terms of this memorandum.  


The mediation was carried out in accordance with the professional requirements and the Code of Practice of the Family Mediation Council. 


This summary may, of course, be produced to legal advisers upon the basis that it is and remains a privileged document. Each party warrants that they have been open and honest with respect to the financial disclosures, and that the details listed are a full and complete disclosure of their assets, liabilities, pensions, and income.  


Background 

Names 

Julian Richard BRISTOL 

Vivianne Jane BRISTOL 

Address 

 

 

Occupation 

Marketing Executive 

Account Manager 

Date of Birth 

20 January 1972 

19 October 1974 

 

Child of the Marriage 

Date of Birth 

Place of Education 

Eleanor Margaret BRISTOL 

21 January 2006 (18 yrs) 

North Gloucestershire College 

 

Julian and Vivianne were married on 10 September 1999. Their child Eleanor Bristol is 18 years old and was born on 21 January 2006.   


Separation and Divorce 


Julian and Vivianne separated on the 16 October 2017 and live separately, each with a new partner.  


It was agreed that family counselling is not required; both partners have considered their own best interests and those of their child Eleanor.  


The parties are divorced, having received a Conditional Order on 25 June 2022 and Final Orders on 12 August 2022.  


Arrangements for Eleanor 


Julian and Vivianne have discussed the arrangements for Eleanor in mediation and acknowledge the importance of them each maintaining the best possible relationship with her, and she with each of them, individually and as a parental partnership. They believe that Eleanor should and does feel that she has a home with each of her parents, that her parents are united in their love for her, and that they will share their time with her equally. This is facilitated by Eleanor having a bedroom at each of their houses, which are located close to each other and close to North Gloucestershire College, which Eleanor attends on a full-time basis.  


Eleanor also works part-time as a waitress but does not pay rent or living expenses to either, continuing to live with each of her parents as a supported child. Julian and Vivianne recently purchased a car for Eleanor as a birthday present, at a cost of approximately £9500 including insurance.  


Financial Resources 

 

Julian and Vivianne recently sold their family home in order to be able to afford to separate:  

  • Sale price of house £410,000 

  • Mortgage discharged £150,000 

  • Costs of sale   £10,000 

  • Net proceeds £250,000 


Funds are held by Julian, with the consent of Vivianne, pending Orders for the distribution of assets. 


Subsequently, approximately £25,000 has been spent by agreement as follows: 

  • Update of Julian’s new partners home   £15,000 

  • Purchase of car for Eleanor     £8,000 

  • Cost of living     $2,000 

  • Total   £25,000 

  •  Net proceeds remaining £225,000 


Julian Richard Bristol 


Julian works full-time as a Marketing Executive and receives a variable salary based on commissions. Last year his salary was £76,000. 


Julian has a pension with a cash equivalent transfer value of £210,000. 


Properties or assets:  

Property/Asset 

Value 

Mortgage/Loan 

Cash 

£225,000 

 

Car (2019 BMW 525i) 

£25,000 

 

 

 

 

 

Vivianne Jane Bristol  


Vivianne works part-time as an Account Manager and receives a salary of £32,000 per annum.  


Vivianne believes that she does not have a significant pension having refused the offer of a pension at her place of work. It is unclear whether this is legal or not. 


Property and assets: 

Property/Asset 

Value 

Mortgage/Loan 

Jewellery 

£8,000 

 

Car (2015 Volvo DX60) 

£17,000 

 

 

 

 

 

Accommodation Plans 


Each party now lives with their new partner in what each of them considers to be a stable and long-term relationship.  


Julian believes that his contribution to the renovation of his partner’s property and contribution to household expenses assists in securing his tenancy. 


Vivianne is a carer for her new partner, John, who is 52 years old. Vivianne has known Anthony since school days and their reconnection is the nominated cause of the breakdown of the relationship with Julian.  


Each party wants Eleanor to continue living with them for as long as Eleanor wants to continue in that arrangement and believes that the accommodation arrangements are suitable and long-term.   


Proposals Relating to Capital 


Julian and Vivianne discussed the allocation of the proceeds of the sale of their house between them at mediation. If the spilt were to be done on a 50/50 basis, each party would receive approximately £112,500.  

Were Julian’s use of £15,000 to renovate his new partner’s property to be added back, the amount to be divided would be £240,000 and 50% of that would be £120,000.  


However, it was decided (subject to the Orders of the Court) that Julian will pay to Vivianne the sum of £120,000 as full and final settlement of the proceeds of sale, and that Julian will retain the balance, currently £105,000, for himself.  


The reason for the disproportionate favouring of Vivianne with respect to the remaining capital was given in mediation as: 

  • Julian had spent a proportion of the proceeds (£15,000) on renovating his partner’s property. 

  • The £15,000 difference between £120,000 for Vivianne and £105,000 for Julian will result in 56% of the proceeds for Vivianne and 44% for Julian. 

 

Proposals Relating to Pensions 


Julian and Vivianne initially proposed to each keep their pensions separate. The mediator provided legal information to Vivianne as follows: 

  • Given this has been a long marriage, with a child, the contributions of the parties and their future needs, a court, if requested or otherwise, would be likely to make a Pensions Sharing Order (PSO) such that Vivianne would receive a share of Julian’s pensions.  

  • An independent legal adviser would be likely to advise Vivianne to apply for a PSO on the grounds of item a.  

  • The conduct of the spouses, that is the action of Vivianne in beginning a new relationship while married to Julian, was of no relevance to the financial settlement unless it would be unfair to disregard it.  


The mediator spoke with Vivianne separately, in the absence of Julian, and Vivianne confirmed that she did not want to make a claim for Julian’s pension. Vivianne confirmed that she was not under any duress or threat, and that she was making this choice of her own free will.  


Nevertheless, in view of the likelihood of a judge not agreeing to Consent Orders that varied from a relatively equal division of the assets, it was agreed that Julian would transfer one third of his pension to Vivianne.    


Cars, Furniture, and other Personal Possessions 


Julian and Vivianne will each retain possession of their own cars and jewellery. They expect to be able to agree the division of their furniture and other personal possessions between themselves. 


Next Steps 


Even though this is a temporary agreement, the mediator recommends that Julian and Vivianne discuss the proposals set out in this Memorandum with independent solicitors. The Dispute Clinic Ltd can refer the parties to suitable solicitors with relevant expertise in these matters.  


In the absence of instructed solicitors, the parties will themselves, with assistance, amend and agree the terms of a Consent Order previously filed, recording the financial arrangements set out in this Memorandum. The Order can then be lodged with the Court for the Judge’s approval. 

15 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Real Life Employment Law Case Studies

Case A - Claimant Vs Dimensions Claims: Direct discrimination, failure to make reasonable adjustments, constructive dismissal Complexity: Out of time, Employed, long term sick Casework: Early concilia

Comentarios


bottom of page