Divorce and pensions drive lawyers and IFAs to pair up

Divorce and pensions drive lawyers and IFAs to pair up

Pensions and divorce complexity has driven TWM Solicitors to forge more working partnerships with financial advisers in order to provide a more all round service for clients.

Julian Sampson, partner at Cranleigh-based TWM Solicitors, said the impact of divorce on financial matters such as pensions sharing is one that needs the skills and expertise of a financial advisers. 

He commented: "With pensions and divorce in particular, it can be very difficult [for us] to advise."

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While to some extent it is easier for workplace pensions as the trustees know what to do, it can be much harder when it comes to personal pensions or pensions already in payment.

Mr Sampson said: "Advisers are definitely needed to fill a gap and we need to reach out to advisers in our network.

"From our perspective, rather than just being passive and waiting for referrals, we want to engage with financial advisers and provide an opportunity for us to work together."

Cranleigh-based Informed Choice is one of the advisers TWM Solicitors is collaborating with.

Martin Bamford, chartered financial planner for Informed Choice, said working with TWM Solicitors had been beneficial. He explained: "It is essential for financial planners to build strong working relationships with professional connections, especially solicitors.

"Our services are complementary especially when it comes to divorce.

"While a solicitor is well placed to lead on the legal aspects of the divorce and any arrangements for children, our role as financial planners is essential in helping form a suitable financial agreement."

For example, Mr Bamford said that, too often, advisers come across clients who are divorced and have engaged with them too late in the process, once the court has sealed a financial agreement that does not consider all of the short, medium and long-term needs for the divorcing partner or their children.

He added: "Professional advisers are often well connected in the local community, creating opportunities for referring clients in both directions and helping respective businesses to grow.

"Within our own business, we work hard to maintain close working relationships with a small number of solicitors, accountants and estate agents, which we know and trust to deliver an excellent service to our clients."

This comes after Yorkshire-based financial planner Informed Financial Planning set two joint ventures in motion with local law firms to help deliver a wider range of services to clients.

Kevin Ferriby, managing director of the firm, told FTAdviser: "A joint venture brings benefits to each party. For us at Informed Financial Planning (IFP), it brings new business and more clients, while it helps the legal practices provide a more rounded service for their clients, and satisfy a wider range of needs."

The two law firms IFP has entered into a joint venture with are East Yorkshire-based Quality Solicitors Lockings and Lincolnshire-based Bridge McFarland.