No 8
Second Time
AroundNew relationship, new responsibilities. Helping you ring the changes in your legal, financial and property priorities

Next steps

Second Time Around

Whether as the result of divorce, separation or the death of a previous spouse or partner, looking for second time around happiness in a new relationship will inevitably bring about changes in your priorities and responsibilities. For example, you'll need to update your Wills - especially if step children have come into the equation or if more children should come along - or if you both want to ensure that your own children benefit most from the wealth you have individually built up in the past.

Are you thinking about selling one or both of your properties or, perhaps, setting up home in one and letting out the other? As a new couple, this would be an ideal time to re-assess your tax position to take full advantage of whatever breaks and reliefs might now be available to you, either jointly or individually. And just how will your new relationship affect your future financial planning and whatever arrangements you may already have in place?

Taking our 360 Lifestage Review is the best way to discover what you should be thinking about at your stage of life. Alternatively, click on any button below to find out exactly why particular services could be important to you if you have become involved in a second time around relationship.

  • Related Documents
  • FAQs
  • Q1 Why both of you should consider revising any existing Wills
  • A1
    • If you have each made Wills in a previous marriage or relationship, these should be updated to reflect your new family situation - for example, removing an ex-partner as a beneficiary
    • If you now wish to provide for stepchildren or other new members of your extended family, remember that none of these will be provided for unless specifically mentioned in your Wills
    • Revising your Will could also include changes to your original wishes about funeral arrangements
    • If you are planning on having children, you will need to update your Wills with every new arrival or previous versions could be declared invalid. You should also consider how enlarging your family might affect other provisions you may have already made for children from a previous relationship in such areas as putting money aside for them in Trusts
    • When changing your Will to make sure that your new partner is taken care of, you may also wish to ensure that certain assets are kept with your side of the family
    • And remember ... without an up to date Will and unless you are married, your new partner will not automatically be entitled to anything, including any share of a jointly owned property. Without a Will in place, everything would go to your next of kin - normally your parents or siblings
  • Q2 Who would you want to look after your affairs if you were no longer able to do so yourself?
  • A2
    • You may want and expect your new partner to look after your financial affairs and personal wellbeing in such circumstances, but without a Power of Attorney agreement in place naming your partner, he or she would have no rights to act on your behalf whatsoever
    • A Power of Attorney is a simple and inexpensive legal arrangement that allows each of you to nominate the other to act on your behalf whenever necessary - if one of you were involved in an accident or suddenly struck down by a serious illness, for example, or if it becomes necessary to spend lengthy periods away on business
    • If not your partner, you may prefer to name your children who are now old enough to be trusted to carry out your wishes - but, either way, it is vitally important to revoke any previous Power of Attorney arrangements which may have given authority to an estranged spouse or partner
  • Q3 Thinking about buying a new property together?
  • A3
    • Where to live is always a major consideration for couples in a second time around relationship - especially if you need to move to a larger property to accommodate a suddenly enlarged family
    • If you decide to buy a property together, compiling a Minute of Agreement with the help of a solicitor allows you to state in writing if one of you has paid the larger part of the deposit to avoid unnecessary arguments if the relationship breaks down and you need to sell
    • If your new partner moves into your current home and there are older children of independent age involved, you might consider buying another property for them to solve any potential overcrowding problems
  • Q4 Do you each have properties to sell?
  • A4
    • If so, this could be an ideal opportunity to amalgamate your separate assets by putting the proceeds from the sale of two existing properties together to buy something larger or relocate to a more desirable area
    • On the other side of the coin, selling could also be a money-making solution if there is a large family house left over from a divorce or the death of a spouse or partner and you now want to downsize to something smaller to suit your new relationship
    • Whatever your reasons for selling, your first move should be to discuss your options with an established and experienced estate agency such as Pagan Osborne
  • Q5 Would renting a place together suit you better than buying?
  • A5
    • Without the long-term obligations attached to buying a property, renting is an ideal way to 'road test' your new relationship and see how living together works out
    • You may wish to rent with your new partner if you cannot afford to buy a new property or if you are suffering the financial pressure of having to maintain your previous home if children are still living there
    • Renting property for the use of children from previous relationships might be well worth considering as a way of giving you and your new partner more space and time for each other
  • Q6 How does your new relationship affect your position on tax?
  • A6
    • We can offer advice on how to reorganise your individual assets for the benefit of both of you - for example, if your partner earns a lower income then you may be able to distribute assets to them and possibly pay less tax
    • Are both of you making the most of your separate tax-free savings allowances or individual annual exemptions for Capital Gains Tax?
    • If you have married, are you sure that you're making the most of all the tax breaks available to spouses?
    • Taking a collective approach to your tax affairs, even if you're not married, could help you significantly reduce your overall tax liability
  • Q7 Building a new life together means planning ahead for a secure financial future
  • A7
    • Quite naturally, you will now be looking forward to a long and fulfilling life together. That's why it's never too early to start exploring the many different financial arrangements that could help ensure the security you are both hoping for in years to come
    • Although individual circumstances can obviously vary greatly from couple to couple, it is important in any second time around relationship to discuss and agree what financial provisions each of you wishes to make for former partners and children from your previous relationships
    • There are many ways expert advice can help you focus on your financial planning priorities for the future. If your relationship produces children, for example, what is the best way to plan for their education?
  • What a great service - and it was free! We talked about our current situation and our plans for the future. Very concisely and in a language we could understand, it was explained to us what legal and financial services we should put in place to make sure our plans, each other and our family were protected. I highly recommend this is one of the most worthwhile things I have done this year!
    Mr and Mrs Stevenson


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