Revealed: Six steps any woman facing divorce MUST take to ensure you don’t lose out emotionally and financially (and why you shouldn’t cut back on spending)

  • EXCLUSIVE:  Lisa Pepper of Osbornes Law reveals how to prepare for the worst
  • Says that people should take action as soon as they suspect divorvce is possible
  • Keep spending at your regular rate so you can prove your essential outgoings 
  • Cut back on hobbies and work if possible to spend more time with children  

Nobody wants to go through the breakdown of a marriage, but if your relationship does look to be heading for divorce, experts have revealed the six key steps you should take to protect yourself. 

To coincide with the opening of a new office in Hampstead, London leading divorce lawyer, Lisa Pepper of Osbornes Law has revealed there are three important areas to take care of: finances, children and evidence. 

And she said that you shouldn’t wait to come to a final decision with your partner, you should act straight away to be prepared if the worst happens.  

‘I often wish clients had come to see me six months earlier, when divorce was only a possibility,as there are practical steps clients could take to protect themselves,’ she told Femail.  

From spending more time with your children to encouraging your partner to go back to work, these are the six actions you need to take to ensure you don’t lose out, both financially and emotionally. 

Leading divorce lawyer Lisa Pepper of Osbornes Law has revealed the key steps you need to take to protect yourself emotionally and financially if you sense a split is on the cards (stock image)

1. DON’T CUT BACK ON SPENDING 

It’s counterintuitive at a time when you may want to save your pennies, but if you think a split is on the cards, don’t cut back on expenditure. 

Both parties will be required to produce a budget in order for the Court to establish if spousal maintenance needs to be paid. 

In cutting back beforehand, you are essentially helping the other party say you ‘need’ less money coming in each month. 


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This means that if you decide to leave the family home, you shouldn’t downsize too much, or move to a substandard area, especially if children are involved. At the same time, be wary of locking yourself in to a new mortgage with a redemption penalty in the next few years.

You can also protect yourself by ensuring that your laptop/smartphone/anything with financial information on is covered by a password, and keeping all printed documents secure. 

Equally, resist the temptation to snoop on your spouse – in recent years the Family Court has been much tougher on people who do.

Lisa advises spending as much time as possible with children and keeping a record of everything you do together from homework to days out (stock image)

2. SPEND MORE TIME WITH CHILDREN 

If you are the main breadwinner and see much less of your kids, keep a diary of the time you do spend with them – whether days out, or helping with maths homework. It all counts. 

If you work full-time, consider if you could work at home one day a week, or reduce your hours to see more of your children, and cut down on any hobbies that take you away from them. In short, do anything you can to spend more time with your kids. 

3. ENCOURAGE A RETURN TO WORK  

If your spouse stays at home, do what you can to support them returning to work. If they want a career change, encourage a vocation that is lucrative. A psychotherapist or interior designer is less likely to be able to be self-sufficient. 

Teaching can be a good option for a parent, given the childcare needed in the summer holidays, however you can also discuss other childcare options – a summer au pair for example, over the six-week break.

4. THINK BEFORE YOU TEXT 

It’s all about creating a good impression for a judge who does not know you outside of the court room.

So, when you communicate, think before you write. Any text messages, emails, or even social media posts can be used against you, so avoid writing anything in anger. 

What is the divorce rate in the UK? 

In 2017, divorces rose for the first time in seven years – with the stress of Brexit blamed.

The number of men and women divorcing reached 106,959 in 2016, up by 5.8 per cent on the previous year.

The rate has increased from 8.5 to 8.9 per thousand married people, bucking a downward trend that has been in place since 2009, according to official ONS figures.

The most common duration of a marriage was 12 years, up marginally from 11.9 in 2015 and 11.4 in 2009.

Men were on average 46.1 when they ended an opposite-sex marriage, while women were 43.7 – reflecting the fact that men tend to tie the knot with women who are younger.

The average divorce age has increased year-on-year since 1985, when it was typically in the mid-30s. 

By all means, have a vent and write it down, but don’t hit send until the heat of the moment has passed. It’s often preferable to have a face to face conversation.

5. CUT DOWN ON ALCOHOL  

 At a time of stress, it is easy to reach for a glass of wine or two in the evenings to help you unwind. This can add up and in children cases, you can face allegations of alcohol or substance abuse making you a risk to your children. 

If you submit to testing (and it’s difficult not to, as the Judge will be very suspicious otherwise) then a hair sample is taken (blood and urine can be also). 

One centimeter of hair growth is roughly equivalent to a months’ consumption; so the longer your hair, the further back the testing can go.

6. DO NOT ACCEPT ABUSE  

Finally, and importantly, take action if you are in an abusive relationship. No one should suffer abuse at the hands of a loved one. No one has the right to abuse. If you’re in that situation, get help now. 

Keep a diary of any verbal or hysical abuse and don’t be abusive yourself. Go for a walk to cool down, if it comes to it. 

If you are being physically abused, go to see your GP and call the police. Contemporaneous third-party records of what’s been going on are good evidence too, otherwise it’s your word against theirs.

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