The Ministry of Justice has launched an investigation into an error found on an online divorce form used to calculate financial settlements. The error could mean that couples that chose to take the ‘DIY divorce’ route since April 2014, could have been open to potential miscalculations in their final financial settlements.
It was revealed last week, that ‘Form E’, used in England and Wales, contained a glitch in Paragraph 2.20 that, in some cases, meant debts were excluded from the financial settlements calculated using the online version of the form.
Could you have been affected?
- Did you handle your own divorce?
- Were you divorced between April 2014 and Dec 2015?
- Did you use the online version of Form E to calculate your divorce settlement? (If you printed the form off, you will not have been affected).
- Check your Form E to see what version you have as well as the version of the other partner, to see if any of those coincide with the faulty Form E.
Otten Penna would like to assure our divorce clients that this issue does not affect them, as our calculations are not completed by using the incorrect Form E. However, if you feel you could have been affected, there are a number of courses of action you can take.
- If you have used a solicitor, contact them in the first instance.
- If you haven’t used a solicitor you can contact the Ministry of Justice direct by emailing formE@hmcts.gsi.gov.uk
It’s important to note that however tempting a ‘DIY divorce’, proper representation by a qualified solicitor can be worth its weight in gold, however straightforward the divorce may seem at face value. Our fixed fees for divorce cases start at just £250 +VAT.
If you would like to seek our advice on starting divorce proceedings, we hold two free family advice clinics every week at both the Forum in Wythenshawe (Thursdays 12pm – 2pm) and at our offices in Northenden (Wednesdays 10am-4pm).
Vicky Wright, Solicitor
Vicky Wright, Solicitor is a member of Resolution and an accredited specialist in Finance and Children, Vicky undertakes all aspects of family law including financial matters arising from the breakdown of marriages and other relationships, divorce and children issues and domestic violence.