No Agreement and Wife gets Legal Aid?

Terry first contacted Easy Divorce in March 2007. He was one of our first clients. He was a retired civil servant while his wife Maura was also retired. They had no dependent children. Both resided in Dublin. They had been separated since 1992 and a Judicial Separation was granted in 2000.

Terry’s application was lodged in April with papers served on Maura the same month. Immediately Maura wrote directly to Easy Divorce stating that she was unhappy with the Pension provisions. Specifically that Terry was unwilling to grant her any of his pension. We pointed out that this matter was specifically dealt with in the Judicial Separation where it was ordered by the court that they would have no interest in each other’s pension.

We proceeded to advise Terry to continue on with the process so he served a 14 day warning notice – requesting that she consent or lodge a defence. Maura then lodged an appearance that stated she was receiving legal aid. A further 14 day warning notice was lodged with no responses received.

Because sufficient time had elapsed and no defence was received, Terry was able to apply for a court date – to see the county Registrar. In September 2007 Terry attended court to see the Registrar, at this appointment Maura’s legal representatives were present. They stated that the pension piece was not agreed. The Registrar decided to send the case to what’s referred to as case progression. Essentially this means that all points of disagreement are documented, financials are evidenced etc.

We assisted Terry with preparing all necessary paperwork for case progression. This included him getting documentary evidence to support the Affidavit of Means he had filed. In January 2008, Terry again attended the Registrar. At this appointment the parties agreed that Terry would provide 20% of his pension to Maura – for the period that they were married. Terry was happy with this outcome – in financial terms it meant very little and he wanted to move matters on. A full judgement hearing was scheduled for late February 2008.

Prior to the final hearing we drafted the necessary Pension documentation for Terry. Terry attended court in late February 2008 when his divorce was finally granted.

The fee for Easy Divorce services was €700 including pension order. Despite significant additional paperwork and time our fee remained fixed from the start.