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Divorce And Financial Planning with Paula Ryan

Divorce And  Financial Planning with Paula Ryan

Financial Planner Paula Ryan speaks to Divorce Strategist Suzy Miller about how valuable it is for a divorcing person to speak with a financial planner at an early stage of the process.

“The common mistakes people make when it comes to divorcing and the financial planning side of things is for one, they don’t like to talk to someone like myself, because they’ve not had to do it before, they feel that they can deal with it on their own, they feel that they know all the ins and outs of the financial situation, or they’ve just relied on the lawyer to tell them everything.

And certainly with a lawyer, or even if it gets to the scenario of a judge getting involved, they don’t necessarily know the financial implications of things, certainly for the future as well as the right-now. So to talk to someone like myself will then give you the better understanding of what your options are, and really drill down to what the assets are.

Certainly with couples, we don’t always discuss everything with our partners. If you haven’t been totally honest about what you’ve got, to open it up at the beginning of everything, it makes it clearer for both parties. Because if anything has been hidden, it will come out eventually, and the implications can be a lot worse than if we’ve discussed it at the beginning.

Certainly, with the complications of when you split, you have your separate homes, husband and wife now living apart, but you still have the children growing up. Going through school and university, all these fees and costs will change in the future – and we’ve found this, with my husband and I. His daughter from a previous marriage is now twenty, his son seventeen. And there is always the thought that, if his son goes to university, how is that going to be funded? Are those costs we’ve got to look at? Will his ex-wife be involved?

These are important things to discuss and consider from the outset. It’s not necessarily the case that you will have to put something in place, but it’s having those discussions early on in case you do.

Certainly, protecting things like maintenance could be important to you, because if anything happens to the partner that’s paying maintenance, and that maintenance stops, how would you keep going moving forward? So does there need to be a protection plan in place that will then pay out a lump sum to cover the loss of maintenance or an income protection that will cover the income that will be lost?

So it’s important to look at the whole situation and to try to make sure that you think about as much as you can – we’re not going to cover everything but we do try! Certainly from my point of view, and the personal experiences that I’ve had, these help me look at those situations in a bit more detail, and helps me to pass my experience onto you.

There’s no obligation to you for me to sit down with you and run through your situation, having a look at your financial needs. I prefer to do it face to face, but it can be a telephone call initially if you wanted to, but if you’re quite happy to meet me we can sit down for a coffee and a chat wherever you would like that to be. If you would feel more comfortable in your own home, that’s fine. If you would prefer to meet in a cafe because you’re unsure of who I am and what I do, then that’s also Ok.

After having that initial meeting, you will come away from it being more aware of what your rights are, what financial situations we can look at, how we can improve the situation for you. But also you’ll have confidence in what your future can look like.

I have clients who come to me who are concerned about talking to me because they are thinking – “I haven’t got any ‘wealth’.” It’s not all about the ‘wealth’. We discuss anything – even a debt situation, different options you can have, giving you the information so that you know what your options are. Giving you the confidence to know everything’s not as bad as you think it is. Knowing you’ve got the support there to get through the situation. And certainly, if it is things like debt, it’s knowing how we can deal with it.

Because a lot of people have debts there but are not necessarily dealing with it in the right way that will make them financially better off in the future.

So it’s just sitting down and discussing the whole situation, and some of it can be that you’ve got money sitting in the bank and you’re just leaving it there because you’re scared of looking at any other options. So knowing what the options are, just gives you more confidence when you come away from the meeting. So it’s really important to speak to someone like myself about those options.

Generally, the experience I’ve had from all of my clients in the past is that it’s a weight lifted off their shoulders. Even if we don’t come to a solution straight away, it’s just the fact that you’ve had someone to talk to, someone that you can open up to about it being a financial concern to you, perhaps you don’t really know what you’re able to do about it. For me to just sit down and understand what you’re going through, just takes that burden off your shoulders.”


The first meeting is a no obligation financial review

07841 342387


Paula Ryan Divorce Financial Expert West Sussex


Paula Ryan DipPFS

Paula Ryan Wealth Management

Tel: 01293 553297

Mobile: 07841 342387



The Partner Practice represents only St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of advising solely on the Group’s wealth management products and services, more details of which are set out on the Group’s website The ‘St. James’s Place Partnership’ and the titles ‘Partner’ and ‘Partner Practice’ are marketing terms used to describe St. James’s Place representatives.

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