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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 sorting out a fair financial settlement?

Our consultant service offers expert advice and support to help you reach agreement on a fair financial settlement quickly, and for less than a quarter of the cost of using a traditional high street solicitor.


Not sure what to do.....

  • bubblegum36
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03 Aug 07 #1732 by bubblegum36
Topic started by bubblegum36
Hiya,

Well i am almost ready to leave for my new life in just over a week. We have agreed on the split of everything except the equity in the house which will go on the market next week. My husband has been at home for the past week helping to get the house ready for the market and he promised to go see a solicitor to know his rights before the decision on the division of the propery was made.

I have prompted him 4 or 5 times in the past week to phone one up and even found him one who would give a free consultation (it was him who said he needed to do it while he was on holiday) but he hasn't bothered to make an appt. We were supposed to be going to sit down and discuss and decide before i go as its not really the thing to do over the phone and we both would rather agree between ourselves.

Now, time has run out and he won't discuss it without sol advice first so he knows whats fair. He doesn't seem to believe me with what i have been told and i am open to negotiation but while I understand his concerns, mediation is out the window as we won't be close enough to each other and we can't afford sol bills to sort it.

I'm just worried that once i've gone he won't bother and we will have a hard time comunicating over the phone. He knows i want to file for divorce soon but i'm really worried about his attitude. Its quite amicable in the fact that we can still talk and spend time together without many problems. Why can't he see that with divorce looming and a possible house sale on the cards that this is important stuff? How can i get him moving? its not like he isn't keen to put it on the market...

Any suggestions?
Liza

  • LittleMrMike
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03 Aug 07 #1733 by LittleMrMike
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May I ask you a few questions :

(a) Is the property in joint names ?
(b) I am assuming that at least one of you needs his/her share of the proceeds to secure accommodation for yourselves after the split ; would I be right about that ?

I would guess the answer to both questions is probably Yes ; but I would like you to confirm that for me.

Mike 100468

  • Shelia
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04 Aug 07 #1738 by Shelia
Reply from Shelia
Divorce can be very hard to face. I, at times, find myself procrastinating over the details because they are painful, even though I have needed to get divorced and know it is the way forward.

Maybe it's not a deliberate delaying tactic on his part but he can't quite get his head and heart around it yet.

It's good you can still talk, and I understand your concerns. Perhaps once you are gone and he realises you will not be back, reality will seep in and he will contact a solicitor.

Good wishes

Shelia

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06 Aug 07 #1767 by bubblegum36
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Hi mike,

Yes, it is in joint names. We both need the money, him so he can have a deposit for a new place (not that hes looking yet) and me so i can have some security, i already have a rental property secured which i move into next week but the sooner the property is sold the better as i will struggle financialy.

This might be a daft question but if the house does sell quickly assuming we sort out the equity, can we split the money straight away or if i have already filed for divorce do we have to wait til that is finalized before the split?

I raised the question again over the weekend and he said we could just split it 60/40 if that was agreeable to me. I don't really know, but said i was hoping for abit more as i have to house and look after our 3 kids so he then offered 65/35. i have said i will think about it and let him know this week. I don't want to fleece him but don't know if thats a good split or if i'm just being greedy!!?? Think i'm just worried about the future and how i'll cope money wise compared with him.

Think i will probably accept though as there is about £90000 to £100,000 equity in house before debts to be paid off of about £13,000 including estate agents and sols fees for sale of property. think that sounds quite good. Will know value of house in next few days.

Liza

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06 Aug 07 #1769 by bubblegum36
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Hi Sheila,

Thanks for your reply. You might well be right but its difficult when he never shows any remorse that our marriage is over. My mum keeps asking me if he has ever said hes sorry for his actions and that it has come to this but i know he never will as that would be admitting that he has made me take this step. He keeps telling me that his cheating was because i didn't love him enough, didn't pay him enough attention etc. theres never been any thought for me who has endured years of heartache and loneliness over his behaviour.

Make me feel like he has just been waiting for me to end it cos he never had the guts to and now hes "chickening out" for want of a better phrase. he's nice one minute and really moody the next. i am dreading next Sunday too as he has to take me and the kids to the airport to catch our flight and its going to be hard for all of us. Maybe thats when reality will hit home (for me too i imagine):(

Take care
Liza

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06 Aug 07 #1774 by divwiki
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Hi & re your reply to Sheila:
for what it's worth mood swings of the type you describe him exhibiting could be symptomatic of a level of depression that just might make him irresponsible in the short term. I would suggest, purely as a precaution, that he doesn't drive you all to the airport, but you invite him to come along in the cab or your lift so that he can still say his goodbyes if he wishes.

I'm 99% sure I'm worrying unnecessarily, but why take the risk? You could say to him it's all stressful enough and he doesn't need to drive on top. plus he would have someone to travel back with even if it's simply a cabbie.

By the way I empathise completely that you're dealing with someone who won't give firm answers and on that basis I wonder how much mediation would have helped anyway. Maybe he would have firmed up his decisions in front of a 3rd party.

Enjoy your flight.:)

  • LittleMrMike
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06 Aug 07 #1775 by LittleMrMike
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The difficulty is that, where a property is in joint names, both of you need to sign the transfer to the buyer. I am pretty sure there are procedures to deal with the situation which arises when one joint owner wants to sell and the other does not ( my legal knowledge is getting more rusty by the day ) .

I think the first point to make is that, where a divorcing couple have dependent children, there is a strong probability that the parent with care would be given the right to live in the former matrimonial home while the children are still dependent. When the youngest child reaches 18, the property may then be sold and the proceeds divided, but it is not at all unknown for the parent with care to be awarded the house outright ( although in that case the husband could be offered compensation in other ways, such as being allowed to keep all his pension or reduced maintenance payments ).

But this means that, as far as your husband is concerned, if you sell the house and split the proceeds, then he is getting an immediate cash payment, which is a lot more than most husbands in this situation do. I don't think you are being greedy in thinking of a 65/35 split, such a division is in my view well within the range of the possible, and even 70/30 would not be unknown by any means, especially if it is an immediate payment and the husband doesn't have to wait 10 - 12 years for it. In fact, Liza, I wouldn't be at all surprised if your husband had taken some legal advice of some sort without your knowing it. This is just a gut feeling, but these figures, and the delaying tactics, suggest to me that possibility.

The question that you raised is by no means daft, in fact I would say it was very sensible, but I think that a solicitor would probably advise you to sort out the question of the house as part and parcel of the divorce process. That doesn't mean to say you can't come to an agreement between yourselves ; but it means that your agreement can be incorporated in a Court order which then becomes legally binding, so that neither of you could play silly beggars like deciding you want more money just when the contract is ready for signature, and won't sign unless the other agrees to the revised demand.

But I'm aware that time is not on your side. It is always easy to settle quickly if you are prepared to accept an inadequate amount. Personally, Liza, I would get some legal advice even if it is only a half hour free appoinment.
No solicitor will advise you on a divorce settlement without the full facts, and that is quite correct. For the same reasons I can't advise you either, except in very general terms. You are free to bounce my comments off your solicitor. I just don't want to see you act in haste and repent at Leisure.

Good luck
Mike 100468

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