I am at the full financial disclosure stage of our divorce. I live in the FMH with my two children and was likely to have been awarded the home. My ex has not lived with us for nearly two years.
I was due in court in the middle of June 2007 - but my ex requested the date postponed as he was not ready.
48 hours later he declared himself bankrupt by his father at another court. He had few debts as he was a high earner. (Apparently) he is now a low earner. He has stated that he had borrowed considerable amounts from his equally wealthy father to pay his legal costs and that his father had called the debts in.
Mine and the childrens home is now apparently part owned by the official receiver and my ex is also saying that it is unlikely he soon will be able to pay anything towards the children. He rarely sees the children and has no interest in them.
What am I to do? The value of my home has gone up considerably in the last two years and it is looking like the children and I will have to sell our home to pay the official receiver to give the money to his father who will in turn give the money back to his only son leaving us effectively homeless. Can this happen?
My two sons hate their father for doing this to us, can anyone please tell us what we can do to fight back?
I'm afraid this one is a bit beyond me, and almost certainly beyond the kind of person who would post on this site.
Divorce and bankruptcy don't very often mix, for the painfully obvious reason that there is little point in pursuing a bankrupt spouse for a share of his/her assets.
But the immediate thought that struck me is that this is a contrived bankruptcy, stage managed for the specific purpose of defeating your claims.
If this is the case, I think you need legal advice p.d.q. The Court does have powers it its disposal to set aside arrangements designed to defeat a wife's claims for relief ( or a husband's too, for that matter ). It may sound trite, but do you have a solicitor ?
The only thing I can advise is that I think you need to act quickly. Sorry but this one is over my head.
Could it be possible for your solicitor to ask a judge to stay the bankruptcy proceedings against your husband until your claim has been disposed of ? ( on the grounds that until it is settled, the trustee can't know for certain what your husband's share actually is ).
In addition if he got an adjournment on the basis that he ' wasn't ready ' without mentioning the highly relevant fact that there are bankruptcy proceedings pending, I don't think a judge would like that at all. Methinks I smell a rat.
I certainly think it's worth floating this one with your solicitor. But, as I say, I think speed is important for you.
Thanks very much for your comments. Your reply was very helpful. I do have a solicitor - but I am concerned that she has little dealing/ experience with this matter, as I am not entirely sure how common this situation is.
With regards to smelling a rat - yes a bloody big one!!
Well, your solicitor has acted with commendable promptness. As you now have an expert advising you I think you can safely rely on him but at least we seem to agree that the judge will not be impressed.
I'm expecting my ex to do the same to me. He left 5 weeks ago and handed in his notice at his job which earnt 40k in dividends rather than a salary a year and since leaving not earned a penny says he can't and is hoping to get maintenance from me!