What is a private FDR?

What is an FDR?

An FDR (Financial Dispute Resolution) Hearing is one of the stages of a matrimonial financial remedy application. Most commonly these occur during Court proceedings and the Judge will offer his or her evaluation of the likely outcome of the application. It therefore acts as a good indication of what may be ordered should the matter proceed to a final hearing if the parties cannot come to an agreement. The further aim of the hearing is to allow the parties to try to negotiate a financial settlement to avoid further hearings.

As this is part of Court proceedings, why would you consider paying for a private FDR

The Courts are currently under a lot of pressure with the number of applications that require to be heard; this means that it can take many months before an FDR can occur at Court. Unfortunately, due to this pressure, the Judge who hears the matter may not have had the opportunity to review all documentation. Due to the current Covid-19 situation, hearings have become remote which also means that some hearings are not going ahead as scheduled and have had to be adjourned for the time being. Current guidance has also specified that if parties can proceed with a private FDR then they should do this. Private FDR can therefore speed up the process.

At a private FDR the parties are more in control of the process and are able to select the judge (this tends to be a barrister or a retired judge), the date and the location. Choosing a location outside of the Courtroom can also ease some of the pressure that parties may feel when attending Court. A whole day will also be set aside for the FDR, which means that both the judge and the parties will have enough time to review matters and hopefully agree a settlement. As stated above, in the Court setting it is unlikely that as much time would be given due to the timetabling and potential delays of other matters overrunning. 

Private FDRs also have a higher settlement rate than FDRs that are heard at Court.

If you would like further information in relation to private FDRs or matrimonial finances in general, please contact our family team on 0118 958 9711 or email [email protected]

Further Reading:

Stays, Extensions and Statutory Changes – Following Procedure during COVID-19

Courts on Computers – Hearings during the coronavirus pandemic

Online Mediation – avoid the delay to justice

Get in Touch

If you would like further information, Eleanor Pearson offers an initial one hour fixed fee meeting at a cost of £95 (inc. VAT). During these meeting we can discuss your personal circumstances, options and possible next steps.

Due to the current circumstances, meetings can occur via telephone. We are hoping that meetings at our office in Reading can occur soon. Please call the office on 0118 9589711 or email [email protected] if you would like to book a meeting.

Eleanor is a Family Law solicitor and is a member of Resolution. Eleanor specialises in divorce, financial matters and private children matters.

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