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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.


Need advice on what my rights are

  • LisaSm
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23 May 12 #332389 by LisaSm
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Hi, I have recently been to a solicitor to start divorce proceedings against my husband on the grounds of unreasonable behaviour. We have been together for 8 years and married for 5 yrs. I won''t go into the full details on unreasonable beviour on here but suffice to say my friends, family including his friends wives and solicitor all feel the case is more than sufficient and I haven''t even told them the half of it...!

One of the primary reasons is that my husband thinks that just about every man I speak to or work with I''m carrying on with which is absolutely ludicrous. I work 60 hours a week whilst also studying for a degree and doing a professional course at the same time. With any spare time I do have (which is basically none) I use to make the house look great and do absolutely everything for him. He''s quite fixed in his beliefs and in the past he has even asked me to invite specific people from work (that in his mind he is suspicious of) to family bbq''s and then afterwards accused me of flirting and carrying on with them but will never say a word to any of them !!

He is complete control freak, very aggressive although never physically and wants to know my every move and I can''t live like that anymore. He has quite a reputation and to be honest I am quite scared of the repurcussions like being followed and monitored for the rest of my days which he has threatened !).I''m still young and want my life back !!

I have told him over 18months ago that I wanted a divorce and the reasons why but nothing changed.I have twice left him (2 days and 1 week) but the first time he came and made trouble with my friend where I was staying (I was completely honest about where I went) so she has said I can''t go there anymore so the second time I went to my sisters 150 miles away !! I didn''t want to go like that but when I try and talk to him about leaving he gets angry and threatens me so I had to resort putting the majority of my stuff in storage, leaving him a note whilst he was at work and going with a few bits in a suitcase. No ideal but I didn''t know what to do.

Anyway, needless to say he came and found me at my sisters and made a right scene. I was scared of the impact on my sisters kids who were there so I agreed to go back and "make a go of it" but I actually just need more time to think of my next move and how I can manage this situation.

I think this all stems from the fact that his first wife left him for another man. She left a note too and I often thought that was cowardly but now I know why she did it ! He has 2 children to her - we have none - and if anything I have tried to manage that situation with him too. He let her go without too much fuss because he knew if he did anything she would make life difficult with the kids. He still has regular contact with her and is round at her place all the time chatting and doing "odd jobs" which infuriates me. He has made no attempt to distance himself from her but he says that''s okay. Yet he limits my friends and who I can even speak to male or female.

In terms of the divorce he has said to me that he will deny all my unreasonable behaviour reasons and will actually challenge the divorce based on "my adultery". He has a fixed belief that the only reason anyone would leave him is for another person. He cannot see that he just makes me so unhappy and I feel trapped. We have talked for at least a couple of years and nothing has changed despite him saying it would. In fact he only realised I "meant it" when he got the letter from the solicitor last week !

He has said that he will counter Petition which I know he can''t do based on adultery but will still cite unreasonable behaviour on my part - the cheek of it......

He says he will get the court to get my mobile records and bank statements (they are still in my sole name) and prove I''m upto no good. I''ve got no issues with that in one respect as I have nothing to hide but he is a trouble maker and I don''t want him having access to any of my information. He has caused lots of problems with work and friends in the past by getting my old phone bills and ringing every number he didn''t recognise and threatening everybody under the sun. I''ve lost a lot of friends over this and I don''t want anymore stress or hassle or my job to be put in jeopardy. Can he actually do this..? Do I have to do this..?

In terms of finance settlement I don''t want to rip him off and in fact I''d be quite happy to renage on some of my settlement just to be away and have my life back. I''d just really like some support and avice on this from you guys please. Thanks x

  • hadenoughnow
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23 May 12 #332407 by hadenoughnow
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All he has to do is state when he returns the Petition that he agrees to the divorce but not the reasons.

Counter petitioning or defending is a waste of time and money. No judge is going to be interested in "he said, she said". If he decides to go this route, don''t panic ... he won''t get anywhere ...but do insist he is the one paying the costs.

Conduct also has no bearing on any financial settlement.

If you go the court route for financial settlement you will have to produce bank statements going back 12 months and so will he.

It is better to reach agreement if you can and go for a Consent Order.

What are the assets of the marriage? How much do you need to house and support yourself?

NB If he is threatening you and you are concerned for your safety, it may be worth getting some advice from Women''s Aid. www.womensaid.org.uk/

Hadenoughnow

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23 May 12 #332426 by cookie2
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LisaSm wrote:

he has said to me that he will deny all my unreasonable behaviour reasons and will actually challenge the divorce

Many people threaten this but very few actually go through with it. Talk is cheap. Once they realize what is really involved with contesting a divorce, they realize that it is simply not worth it. If you want a divorce then you can have one, you do not need your husband''s permission or co-operation. Using unreasonable behaviour is the way to go, it does not matter if he denies it all.

He has said that he will counter Petition which I know he can''t do based on adultery but will still cite unreasonable behaviour on my part - the cheek of it......

Talk is cheap. Lets see if he puts his money (literally) where his mouth is. I really doubt it. We have seen this kind of talk so many times on these forums, but believe me, they never follow through.

I don''t want him having access to any of my information.

You each have a right to full financial disclosure if you want it. If he applies to court for Ancillary Relief then you will be obliged to disclose all financial information including bank statements. Not phone records or other personal information, though - just finances.

But if you can come to an agreement out of court, you can do a D81 instead of form E (with his agreement), which is much simpler and shorter, and doesn''t need bank statements etc.

  • Cornfield
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23 May 12 #332432 by Cornfield
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Just thought I would help ease any guilt you may feel regarding the way you left your husband - I had to do exactly the same thing for the same reasons except I sent a text message rather than leave a note, my situation didn''t allow me to leave a note before I left. All family & friends supported me saying the way I left was my only option & why didn''t I do it sooner. That was 9 months ago & I''ve never looked back

  • LisaSm
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23 May 12 #332451 by LisaSm
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Hi - many thanks for the advice, its really welcome. The assets of the marriage are quite material, I could get between £50k to £100k but I''d be more than happy to leave it as long as he lets me go without a challenge. I''m still a bit worried that no matter what the cost or time he will defend it just to be awkward......what happens then and how long would it drag on for potentially. Ideally, I want this done in 3-6 mths..?

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23 May 12 #332452 by LisaSm
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cookie 2 - thanks for the response and advice, that''s really helpful. Need to get him into a place that means he will agree and consent to as much as possible as right now he is hurt and angry that I left to go to my sisters for a week ! I wonder how much time and cost would be needed from him to challenge (can''t help thinking if he can afford it he will !)

Dont mind the financial disclosure as we both know those details anyway in terms of debt and salaries nothing his hidden - just didnt want him seeing my statements as he queries everything....

Do you think his solicitor (or any indeed) would try and convince him not to..?

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23 May 12 #332453 by cookie2
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A court really don''t care why the marriage broke down or whose fault it is. They only care that it has broken down. If he wants to defend the divorce then it means he will have to show the court that the marriage has not broken down. How is he going to do that? The mere fact that you have petitioned for divorce proves that it has broken down. He really doesn''t have a leg to stand on.

Yes, any legal professional would advise him not to bother defending since it is a complete waste.

As to whether it can be done in 3-6 months, that is another matter. The finances are what cause the delays. Even if you don''t want anything, you need to get him to agree to that and sign it. If he will not then you''ll have to go through court and that can take a long time.

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