where the court makes under section 23 or 24 of this Act a secured periodical payments order, an order for the payment of a lump sum or a property adjustment order, then, on making that order or at any time thereafter, the court may make a further order for the sale of such property as may be specified in the order, being property in which or in the proceeds of sale of which either or both of the parties to the marriage has or have a beneficial interest, either in possession or reversion.
An order for a lump sum, property adjustment or secured provision takes effect only on decree absolute, so no order could be made under this section to take effect before that time.
The order could therefore for example, require the sale of a property owned by the respondent, and the payment of a lump sum from the proceeds of sale with the balance to be paid to the respondent, or the sale of a jointly owned former matrimonial home, with a requirement that one of the parties to a marriage and his or her cohabitant be entitled to bid. It is not uncommon for such orders to provide that the property be sold for the best offer received in excess of a certain figure.
What the court cannot do is require payments to third parties such as creditors who have no connection with the property or the sale thereof, it would be proper to include an order for payment of estate agents charges but not for payment of debts owed by the parties.
'before deciding whether to make an order under this section in relation to that property, it shall be the duty of the court to give that other person an opportunity to make representations with respect to the order ; and any representations made by that other person shall be included among the circumstances to which the court is required to have regard under section 25(1).
There is no power to make an interim order for sale under s.24A or, indeed, under any other provision. This is considered.
Author: Roger Bird & Andy King Ancillary Relief and Financial orders Handbook Eighth edition