Consent order

Consent order
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Methods and techniques

A consent order is governed by federal and state laws, which vary by jurisdiction. It is generally a voluntary agreement worked out between two or more parties to a dispute. It generally has the same effect as a court order and can be enforced by the court if anyone does not comply with the orders. Consent orders may also be issued by administrative agencies. For example, a licensing commission may issue a consent order to a licensee in which the licensee agrees to the imposition of certain disciplinary sanctions, such as reprimand or the suspension or revocation of his or her license. The use of a consent order allows the licensing agency and the parties involved to resolve a disciplinary proceeding initiated by the agency without the time and expense required by a formal administrative hearing[1].

Clean break clause[edit]

A consent order is a legally binding document that sets out the financial arrangements you and your ex have come to. It details how you’re going to split any assets, debts, pension, and income you have once you’re divorced. It is legally binding which means it will protect you both if anyone tries to change their minds in future. It often has what is called a ‘clean break clause’ in it which protects the money or assets that you may earn or receive in the future (for example, pensions, inheritance, lottery wins or future earnings) from being claimed by your ex. Usually, the clean break clauses are just part of the whole financial agreement which a solicitor puts into a consent order[2].

Calculating child maintenance[edit]

Calculating child maintenance during parents' divorce: In any case where the court is to make a consent order based on the parents' agreement and excluding the CSA's involvement, the order is still likely to be for periodical payments in the ballpark area of what CSA would have assessed, albeit that under the CSA formula (to be repealed in the near future when the new CSA regime is implemented) the amount would not include the carer's premium. We must take into account a child's[3]:

  • earning capacity (child models, actors and film stars)
  • property (including any income derived from it)
  • needs
  • physical or mental disability (if relevant).

Necessary information to complete a consent order[edit]

We will need to give the court a summary of the value of[4]:

  • assets (e.g. properties, vehicles, business assets and bank accounts)
  • debts (loans, credit cards etc),
  • pension (even if you have agreed to leave each other’s pensions you will need to provide a CETV – Cash Equivalent Transfer Value for each pension you hold)
  • income from all sources (including any maintenance, benefits or rental income you receive)

Advantages of consent order[edit]

The main advantages of consent order (for example: during divorce)[5]:

  • You don’t need to go to court and argue your case before a judge. The consent order process is designed to be quick and amicable, without attending court.
  • As long as both parties agree and the order is generally fair, the Judge will grant the consent order without the need for any further hearings or correspondence.
  • If the judge thinks the order is unbalanced, they will generally ask the parties to write in and explain how they came to the order.
  • On rare occasions, they may ask the parties to attend a short hearing to ensure both parties have entered into the consent order with full understanding and have not been placed under any duress.

Footnotes[edit]

  1. F. Burton 2003, p.229
  2. D. Jordan 2017, p.82
  3. F. Burton 2003, p.203
  4. F. Burton 2003, p.203
  5. S. Calkins, A. Horvath, J. Villafranco 2009, p.239

References[edit]

Author: Paulina Czarnota