The Police Federation Spring 2012 Police familymatters Islamic Legal Service Russell Jones & Walker has one of the largest family law teams in the country with 13 years experience representing Police officers. With the recent addition of Aina Khan, the UK’s leading solicitor providing innovative family law solutions under UK and Islamic law, we have identified a niche area and launched a groundbreaking new division - the first in the UK - RJW Islamic Legal Services. Society’s Family Panel and Children Panel. She is a top expert in handling the highly charged negotiations arising from cases covering both UK and Islamic family law. Aina has a wide network of specialist contacts in the UK and abroad to assist her clients. As well as providing you with the best possible advice and representation under English law, we also provide specialist help in achieving a just solution for you covering: She appears regularly on TV, radio and in the press, here in the UK and abroad. She also gives lectures highlighting the pressing issues facing the Muslim community as well as on mainstream English law. She is uniquely placed to find the answer for police officers and their families to problems arising in this complex area. Islamic Divorce Islamic Financial Settlements upon Divorce Unregistered Islamic marriages and Mehr finance claims Recovery of Wedding Jewellery and Belongings Islamic Mediation Islamic Marriage Guidance and Counselling Aina Khan heads the Islamic Legal Services division and leads our specialist family law team. She is an accredited member of the Law Celebrity Pre-nups The Daily Mail have run a story suggesting that model Heidi Klum and singer Seal, who have been happily married for 6 years will be pursuing a divorce due to irreconcilable differences. The couple married in Mexico in 2005 and have three children together, whilst Heidi has one child from a previous relationship, whom Seal adopted shortly after their marriage. With Heidi Klum rumoured to be worth an estimated $70 million, having earned a reported $20 million just last year and Seal’s wealth a significant amount as he is one of the most well known soul singers around, it will be interesting to see whether theirs will be an amicable and private separation or a messy affair which ends up splashed across the tabloids. If they did enter into a pre-nuptial agreement before marrying then this should greatly reduce the uncertainty regarding their financial Contact us for all queries relating to Islamic legal matters or services: Tel: Email: Web: 0800 884 0110 [email protected] www.rjw.co.uk/islamic settlement. A pre-nuptial agreement can set out the division of a couple’s finances on a separation and even deal with where the children will live and how much financial support one parent will make to the other for the benefit of the children. They can also include clauses prohibiting a couple from disclosing information about the other and discussing their separation in the press. Although pre-nuptial agreements are not legally binding in England and Wales since the Supreme Court decision in the case of Radmacher v Granatino (2010), the Court will give effect to a prenuptial agreement if it is freely entered into by each party with a full appreciation of its implications and provided it is not considered to be unfair. With Heidi Klum and Seal ‘the golden couple’ considering ending their marriage, it is important to remember that pre-nuptial agreements should be a carefully considered by any engaged couple. This factsheet is for general guidance only and should not be treated as a definitive guide or be regarded as legal advice. If you need more details or information about the matters referred to in this factsheet please seek formal legal advice. This information was correct at time of going to press February 2012. What effect does the Supreme Court ruling of Jones v Kernott have on couples who own property together but who aren’t married? How then does this affect the man on the street? If you buy a property now (and indeed since 1998) you will have completed a TR1 form. On this form you can specify exactly how you hold the property - so if one party puts in more money than the other, that party can protect their interest so that when the property eventually sells they know exactly how the proceeds of sale will be distributed. Ms Jones and Mr Kernott met in 1980 and purchased their jointly owned property in May 1985, but never married. At the time of purchase there was no opportunity to confirm how they held that property, other than jointly, unless they entered into an express declaration of trust. They separated in 1993. Since that time Ms Jones brought up their children and paid the mortgage. In 2006 Mr Kernott sought to recover a 50% share of the property. However, the Supreme Court disagreed with him and said that it would be unfair for him to have 50% of the net proceeds of sale in the circumstances and ordered that he have a 10% interest in the property. Case study - an unmarried couple buy a property. One party puts £100,000 towards the purchase price, the other puts in £50,000. If they want to protect their respective contributions, then they need to confirm on the TR1 that they either hold the property as “Tenants in Common” in unequal shares of 67:33 or expressly say that upon the eventual sale one party receives £100,000, the other £50,000 and any excess is split equally between them both (depending what they agree). If they tick one of the other two boxes, i.e. “Tenants in Common” in equal shares or “Joint Tenants”, then when the property eventually sells the proceeds will be divided equally between them both, regardless of the fact that they contributed different amounts. So when the Land Registry Form TR1 was introduced, which made provision for purchasers to expressly declare their beneficial interests, the type of dispute that arose in Jones v Kernott should not arise again. To conclude, if you are buying a property with your partner, or perhaps putting money towards the deposit of your child’s property, then you must have this clearly stated on the TR1 at the time of purchase, otherwise you risk losing your money. It’s generally too late to do anything about it after purchase, so make sure you get the right legal advice at the time of purchase. How do you arrange contact with your children when you are working shifts? One of the most frequently asked questions our clients who have children ask is how they can arrange contact when they are working shifts. We tend to find that ex spouses who may have understood our client’s shift patterns for years while they were together suddenly suffer amnesia and have no idea how the shifts work once they are separated. We may be being cynical about this but you would be amazed at how many times we receive letters from ex spouses solicitors saying that little Jimmy cannot possibly continue seeing his father on his father’s rest days because his mother has no idea as to when those rest days are and it would therefore be far too confusing for little Jimmy. It is however important to remember that the children do need a good degree of certainty as it provides them with reassurance and security that they know with which parent they are to be living with and when. We encourage clients to put a chart up in their kitchen with a timetable of when the children are going to be with them and when Contact us Please feel free to discuss your own position and concerns. Contact your nearest Russell Jones & Walker 0ffice on: T: 0808 175 7710 E: [email protected] W: www.rjw.co.uk/polfed they are going to be with the other parent. The children often help make these charts and it means that they can look at them and easily remember where they are supposed to be and when. It is important that children are involved in these arrangements. Always remember however that you work for an organisation that is family friendly and if you do need to change shift patterns or your working arrangements due to children, then your employer does have a legal obligation to consider it. Our offices: Birmingham, Bristol, Cardiff, London, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Newcastle, Sheffield, Wakefield & Edinburgh - Associated office. Russell Jones & Walker Solicitors is regulated and authorised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA number 54695) and regulated by the Financial Services Authority for insurance mediation activity. This factsheet is for general guidance only and should not be treated as a definitive guide or be regarded as legal advice. If you need more details or information about the matters referred to in this factsheet please seek formal legal advice. This information was correct at time of going to press February 2012.
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