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What are we each entitled to in our divorce settlement?

What does the law say about how to split the house, how to share pensions and other assets, and how much maintenance is payable.

What steps can we take to reach a fair agreement?

The four basic steps to reaching an agreement on divorce finances are: disclosure, getting advice, negotiating and implementing a Consent Order.

What is a Consent Order and why do we need one?

A Consent Order is a legally binding document that finalises a divorcing couple's agreement on property, pensions and other assets.


Do you need help going to court over a Financial Settlement?

Our consultant service offers expert advice and support for people who are going to court over a fair financial settlement, for less than a quarter of the cost of using a traditional high street solicitor.


First Appointment - Self Representation

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27 Sep 07 #4069 by OBEs 1 canoodly
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Hello again Ambel

Well your case sounds almost identical to ours!!!!

My NP (Old Blue Eyes) lived in very temporary accommodation for 5 years whilst still paying the mortgage and the buildings insurance on the FMH where he left his wife sitting very comfortable in a house that he had maintained lovingly and built extensions, a beautiful garden with water features etc. etc. brand new bathroom, you name it he'd done it!!

However, when we read her form E....Yes! You guessed it she had put down the mortgage payment as an outgoing and future need along with the insurance when of course he had been paying it.

She also claimed that she had paid for the bathroom to be updated and repairs and had bought a new fire (for a centrally heated double glazed home??) and accused him for not paying his share of the bill she sent him of 1,200 whilst he continued to live in a cold damp mobile home!! We later found out that a friend of the family had nipped round and sorted the bathroom out for about 50 quid!!!!

She too had taken out a bank loan.

The above seems to be the norm when Divorce is looming! I am sure the solicitors put the mortgage/rent payments into the needs equation hoping it might get overlooked.

In the meantime we had taken on a house together with a massively large mortgage. This was OBE’s first proper home in 7 years. We had only known each other 2 years but both needed somewhere to live. The Solicitors (including our own) seem to totally ignore the fact that both of us were still subsidising our previous homes and that we were struggling to build a new life! It all seemed to be about her, her needs were paramount. No doubt your NP's ex will be filing some sort of medical condition? That’s usually the next path they follow.

Therefore my advice to you is to be one step ahead of the game all the time and by staying on here you will learn a lot from people with past experience but do still get some legal advice too. You can take on a solicitor on a part time basis. You can agree with them to take advice as and when you need it and pay for that advice as you get it. As Sera mentioned, the courts go on facts so you must keep everything to prove what you pay for. You must start to put a paper trail together. Also whether you rent or buy it doesn't matter they will still want to know about your finances because if you work or have any inheritance they will want to know about it because you are contributing to his lifestyle and income, especially if his ex is still single. If she is, then this will be about her needs - not yours. I know this will make you very angry....trust me in the last few days I have only just stopped grinding my teeth whilst sleeping!!! I know that anger - have done for the last 18 months!!! It has cost us dearly to start out all over again at our age but it seemed as though we didn't matter!

That’s another thing, how old are you both and are there any children....oh I've just read the child maintenance bit.

If his ex-wife cannot work full time or is not in a position to be able to sell the house to release equity a court will usually order a "Mesher Order". This kicks in when the children attain a certain age usually 18 (or whatever age is agreed should they should go on to college or university). This means that your partner may be awarded his 60/40 or if there is enough equity for both even 50/50 but he won’t be able to have it until the children reach 18 or as per order. In the meantime he may be ordered to pay child maintenance and possibly spousal.

I would look very carefully into the matter of applying to be a McKenzie friend. I understand totally the workload you have taken on as I did for OBE, I think us women do take on this load because we seem to have a fire in our belly!!! I became totally obsessed!!

Anyway getting back to the McKenzie friend…the problem I foresee with this is twofold, either his ex-wife will object to you being there or the court may feel that you are a vital part to the case and should this go to a Final Hearing his Wife's Barrister may want to call you in to cross examine you about your finances and therefore by you asking to be his McKenzie friend could in a way cause conflict as you would have been previleged to information from the first appointment and the FDR. This may not be the case but it is worth your while to get the correct information because you would be his best hope in court...however do remember you are not allowed to speak you can only prompt him.


For instance in our case just two weeks ago we went to have counsel with our Barrister to go through the case with him and like you I had all the information, I knew the case back to front inside and out HOWEVER the Barrister still insisted that our solicitor got specific permission from OBE's ex wife as to whether she objected to me being present at the meeting with the Barrister. I was SO angry but the Barrister explained this was in case the other side (his wife’s Barrister) wanted me to stand witness at the Final Hearing and be cross examined regarding my finances to see if me and OBE had been hiding anything!!!

Sorry to go on a bit but I feel I have a slight affinity with your case and if I can help any further please do not hesitate to contact me – by private message if you prefer! Our outcome boiled down to a stroke of luck because OBE’s wife got cold feet at the last minute as she couldn’t face going into court!!

When I was in your position I followed a lot of cases on here where the men and their NP’s truly thought they were going to get the book thrown at them but they didn’t come out so bad and as long as you comply with everything the court wants and do things on time I think you will find you will come through this quite ok. You will probably have your down days but that is normal and all you need do is come on here and find a friend just to help you through that down time we are all here to help and you will come out the other side perfectly happy you sound like a fighter – so go girl!!!

Til we speak again - Nice ones’ to you and yours

OBE’s 1

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17 Oct 07 #4833 by ambeljazz
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I wanted to say a big thank you to OBEs 1.... our chat a few weeks ago really put my mind at ease and focused my thoughts on what needed to go in the Chronology/Statement/Questionnaire pack!

My partners x2b's solicitor didnt have their Questionnaire etc ready until Monday (the day before the First Appointment).

Anyway - the First Appointment went better than expected. The judge kept reminding my partner's x2b's solicitor that the children have 2 parents and therefore the needs of both are important!!

They both have to provide information on mortgage raising capacity and answers to the questionnaires by end November & the next hearing is in January.

We know this is only the beginning but it was very reassuring for my partner to hear for the first time that he is important as a father - not just an open wallet!!

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17 Oct 07 #4848 by OBEs 1 canoodly
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Oh thank you Ambel!!!

I feel quite humble but its nice to get the odd thank you!!:blush:

Much more than that though I am so glad that my advice was of use to you and set your mind at rest about that very first daunting appointment. I wish I had found Wiki when we went for ours I'm quite sure we could have dealt with our case far more differently if I'd have had more knowledge and information!!!

However, although I didn't find the site until much later on in the proceedings I must say it has been of great help to me and so I have no worries about passing on my knowledge and experience as others have done for me.

Congratulations on getting over your first hurdle and please please please keep me informed. If you still have my number you can ring me whenever and if you need help should this proceed further then definitely don't hesitate to call or PM me!!!

May the luck always be with you!

OBEs1

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17 Oct 07 #4849 by OBEs 1 canoodly
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Oh thank you Ambel!!!

I feel quite humble but its nice to get the odd thank you!!:blush:

Much more than that though I am so glad that my advice was of use to you and set your mind at rest about that very first daunting appointment. I wish I had found Wiki when we went for ours I'm quite sure we could have dealt with our case far more differently if I'd have had more knowledge and information!!!

However, although I didn't find the site until much later on in the proceedings I must say it has been of great help to me and so I have no worries about passing on my knowledge and experience as others have done for me.

Congratulations on getting over your first hurdle and please please please keep me informed. If you still have my number you can ring me whenever and if you need help should this proceed further then definitely don't hesitate to call or PM me!!!

May the luck always be with you!

OBEs1

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