What to do if you break up

At Freedom Law, we see lots of clients who haven’t yet separated but are just thinking about it. They want to know if there are any “tips” to gain advantage, or to protect themselves, in case they do break up with their spouse or partner.

Here are a few tips:

1.Keep a diary of important events.

You never know if you may need to recall an important event if a dispute regarding parenting or property develops after you break up. A diary will given you a handy point of reference.

2.Maintain separate bank accounts

This is not usually something you can do without the other party finding out as often it means diverting your income from a joint account to a separate account and this will get noticed.

3.Ensure no large withdrawals can be made from joint bank accounts.

If you have a redraw facility on your joint mortgage, or large sums in a joint bank account, you should go to your bank and ask that they ensure that no redraws of certain sums occur without both parties’ written consent.

4.Change all of your passwords to everything.

Even Facebook, Twitter etc. If you are thinking about a relationship break up, or you think the other party might be thinking about it, you want to ensure your privacy and security, so that the other party doesn’t use your passwords to take advantage of either.

5.Receive information electronically rather than in writing.

It is far easier to keep information private in electronic form than in paper form (unless of course you don’t do the step above and forget to change your passwords!).

6.Put any asset that isn’t registered and traceable in a safe place.

This particularly applies to things of sentimental value as once they are gone, they are usually permanently gone as the cost of recovering them usually exceeds their non-sentimental value.

7. Change your will.

It’s unlikely if you break up that you will still want your to-be ex-partner a beneficiary of your estate if you pass away. Make sure that if this is the case, that you take steps to change your will.

8. Terminate your power of attorney.

Just like your will, its unlikely that if you break up you will still want your so-be ex-partner to have your power of attorney so take steps to terminate this too.

9. Sever the joint tenancy.

Most couples when they purchase property do so as joint tenants. This means that, regardless of their will, their interest in the property will pass automatically to the other owner. Like your will and power of attorney, if you break up, you probably don’t want your to-be ex-partner to benefit in this way so you need to take steps to sever this.

10. Get counselling.

Either to save the relationship from break up, or to save yourself and/or the kids from the emotional trauma of relationship break up. Saving a relationship from break up, or saving civil relations following a break up, is of benefit to you and to your kids.


The fabulous family lawyers at Freedom Law can help you with this and more when you face family law problems or relationship breakdown. Contact us anytime for an in person or online consultation.


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