Options on a Consent Order for Divorce
In April 2022, the new amicable divorce law came into effect, making it easier for people to process a divorce, without needing to apportion blame. This made the divorce process
easier for people to manage the process themselves, using the Government’s online portal and also reduce the conflict involved with needing to stipulate grounds of unreasonable behaviour or details of any adultery that took place. Around the same time, the form required to get a consent order for divorce through the court, a D81 – a Statement of information for a consent order in relation to a financial remedy – increased from just 6 pages to 23 pages! Read more about that in our Guide to the new Form D81.
The upshot is the process for getting divorce was made a lot easier, whilst the process to get a legally binding financial agreement got more complicated.
In our Ultimate Guide to a Financial Consent Order we go through what a consent order is, situations when you should consider getting one (hint: in most cases you should!) and the process involved in getting a legally binding consent order from the court
Presuming you have already decided to get a consent order on divorce, let’s take a look at the main options you have to buy one and the likely costs and times involved.
Can help you reach an agreement?
|Both parties deal with one person?||Costs
|Time to get a draft consent order||Drafted by Regulated Solicitor?||
|Yes||£849 – £1325||2-4 weeks||Yes||
|Yes||£450 – £1575||2-4 weeks||No||
|Co-op legal services||
|No||£720 – £900||n/k||Yes||
|No||£600 to £5000||2-4 weeks||Yes||
Which service should I choose?
Not all the above services are the same and it is important you understand not only what you are paying for, but also what level of service you actually need for your situation. For some, paying a few hundred pounds for an online consent order drafted by a paralegal makes the best sense, especially if there is no urgency. For others, they will need a solicitor drafted consent order, because they have more complicated financial arrangements or they want to visit someone in person to discuss their case. And for others, they will want to deal with one person who can discuss the situation amicably with both parties.
Below, we go into more detail for you on the consent order services offered, to enable you to make the best informed decision for your own consent order needs.
Let’s start with ourselves.
Mediate UK – Offer two services for your financial consent order, depending on whether you have reached an agreement between you or not.
Mediated Consent Order (no agreement reached)
If you have not reached an agreement you can undertake family mediation with ourselves. This is a fully regulated process and usually a requirement before you can go to court on your matter. If you reach an agreement through mediation, we can also use our SRA regulated family law solicitors to draft your consent order and deal with the court. The cost for all of this, including the mediation (up to 4 hours) is £1325pp (inc VAT).
✅ Regulated Process ✅ Solicitor Drafted ✅ 5* Reviews ✅ Required for court ❌ Budget Option
Facilitation (agreement already reached)
We meet with you for a 90-minute session (online or in person) to go through your financial disclosure, sense check your agreement and make sure you have considered everything the court would want you to have looked at. That part of the process is not regulated, unlike family mediation.
We draft a financial statement and memorandum of understanding and when you are happy with everything, we send it to our SRA regulated family law solicitor to draft your consent order and deal with the court. The cost for all of this is £849pp (inc VAT)
❌ Regulated Process ✅ Solicitor Drafted ✅ 5* Reviews ✅ Required for court ❌ Budget Option
Amicable can help you negotiate an agreement if you have not reached one in a process that is unregulated. They can deal with the you both together. Negotiation costs £3150 (inc VAT). If you do not get to an agreement using their service, you will still need to go to family mediation before you can apply to court.
If you have reached an agreement they can also draft your order for £750pp (inc VAT). That process is also unregulated and they do not use family law solicitors. But they can deal with you both together.
❌ Regulated Process ❌ Solicitor Drafted ✅ 5* Reviews ❌ Required for court ❌ Budget Option
Divorce Online are the largest providers on consent orders in the UK. You will need to have reached an agreement between you to instruct them to draft your order. They are an unregulated process. They do not use family law solicitors to draft the order, but they offer an option to do so at an increased fee. The trade off on price is your consent order will take longer to produce but if you are on a budget and have simple finances this may be a good option for you. From £399 (inc VAT)
❌ Regulated Process ❌ / ✅ Solicitor Drafted ✅ 5* Reviews ❌ Required for court ✅ Budget Option
Quickie Divorce are another online provider of consent orders. They do not have the same level of reviews as Divorce Online but are the cheapest method of getting a consent order. As with anything you should shop around to make sure you are happy with the provider you choose. The consent order will take several months to be drafted. From £289pp (inc VAT)
❌ Regulated Process ❌ Solicitor Drafted ❌ 5* Reviews ❌ Required for court ✅ Budget Option
Wikivorce use paralegals to draft their consent orders but set within a law firm. You will need to have reached an agreement in order to use their service. If your finances are complicated they offer a premium service using a solicitor firm. From £359 (inc VAT)
✅ Regulated Process ✅ Solicitor Drafted ❌ 5* Reviews ❌ Required for court ✅ Budget Option
Co-op legal services are a law firm regulated by the SRA. They offer fixed fee or flexible pricing. Reviews are mixed but may be less costly than other independent legal services. They act for you individually but can also draft a consent order if you have reached an agreement. From £720pp (inc VAT)
✅ Regulated Process ✅ Solicitor Drafted ❌ 5* Reviews ❌ Required for court ❌ Budget Option
All solicitor firms should be regulated by the SRA and will usually act for just one of you. Some will quote you a fixed fee to draft your consent order, but remember that they will rarely offer a fixed fee to negotiate your agreement. As with any service, go with personal recommendation or look online for a solicitor firm who has excellent reviews. Total cost varies by firm.
✅ Regulated Process ✅ Solicitor Drafted ✅ 5* Reviews (varies) ❌ Required for court ❌ Budget Option
The best option to get a financial consent order on divorce will depend very much on your individual financial circumstances and whether you have reached an agreement with your ex on everything. As you would expect, using a regulated process and using family law solicitors costs more than non-regulated firms or paralegals.
It is a confusing area and Mediate UK don’t want you to choose our service if it is not correct for you. Feel free to give us a call on 0330 999 0959, email us firstname.lastname@example.org or use the below link to book in a FREE 15-minute consultation to check which service is best for you.
You can also look at our FREE guide – 11 ways to reach an agreement on your divorce or separation.
And you can find out more about what you need to get a legally binding financial consent order for divorce in our blog here.