An online divorce calculator has been set up by a government body to help people work out how much they would gain by leaving their spouse.
It uses information about income, outgoings, assets and children to establish the financial benefit to each party.
Critics say the tool goes against the sanctity of marriage and will encourage couples to split up rather than try to resolve their differences.
It will also embarrass David Cameron, who has repeatedly voiced his support for marriage.
Supporters claim the calculator will help couples in loveless marriages reduce the cost of hiring lawyers while deciding their futures.
The calculator, which is used anonymously, is also aimed at cohabiting couples or those in civil partnerships.
It can be accessed on the website of the Consumer Financial Education Body, which was established earlier this year by the Financial Services Authority.
Users do not have to include their partner’s financial details but are warned failure to do so means the calculator will ‘not be able to compare your situations or consider how you might split all that you have’. Recommended information on income includes pay, benefits, pension details and bank interest.
Details on outgoings include mortgage payments, utility bills, credit card payments, life assurance premiums, children’s pocket money and their hobbies.
Once all the details have been declared, the user can operate a sliding scale to see how much they would receive depending on the proportion of assets they demand. There is also an option to recommend the service to a friend by emailing them the website address.
Dr David Green, of the Civitas think-tank, said: ‘It disregards the sanctity of marriage. To reduce it to monetary consequences, as if that is the predominant concern, is pretty deadly to any civilisation.
‘If you draw up a list of things that are important when weighing up whether or not to get divorced, you wouldn’t start with the financial consequences – you would start with your children.’ Stephen Green, of the pressure group Christian Voice, said: ‘I am worried that schemes like this reinforce the idea that divorce is just a natural progression from marriage.
‘It suggests that divorce is socially acceptable and that’s worrying because financial calculations don’t take into account the emotional cost to children and parents.’
Saturday, January 1, 2011
Government Launches Divorce Calculator to Assist Vindictive Women in Impoverishing Husbands
Divorce calculator puts price on your marriage: Government body's online gadget that undermines commitment