My wife left me and my 2 girls, aged 16 and 18, on 14/12/06 for a guy she was having an affair with for 12 months or more. To cut a long story short, her and this guy (himself just gone through divorce with his wife) have now bought a house together with a mortgage of about £200k. My girls stayed with me until end of March 2007, when they then went to live with their mother and this guy. Since then my elder daughter stays with me most of the time when she is not staying at her boyfriend house.
My 'wife' and I have completed our form E financial statements, to which I did mine thoroughly and declared everything (big mistake!). My wife failed to declare detail for section 4.6 (co-habitee / partners financial details). i now find out that unless our case goes to court, she doesn't need to do this!
She is making a claim for 65% of all the assets i.e., house, pension, other savings etc. She tells me this is the 'minimum' that her solicitor has advised her to claim. This amounts to about £225k. I find this outragous, given that she has set up home with this other guy who is earning, etc. So in a nutshell, I end up paying for their new house. How do you think this makes me feel? What can I do? I could come to terms with it better if she left me to live on her own, but this is not the case. I did not initailly ask my solictor to ask for section 4.6 of the form E, as I wanted to use it as a negotiation point, but I'm now told it is not necessary for my wife to submit this unless it goes to court. Obviously I don't want it to go to court due to yet further expense.
Where is the justice?? Why is there no differential between the situation of a wife leaving her husband to set up home with another man, to that of a wife leaving home to live on her own?
The fact that your ex has bought a house is relevant in that her housing needs are met. Therefore a Court is not faced with an issue as to where the wife is going to live, as is commonly the case.
So then the Court has to look at you and your needs. I would have thought that, whatever happens, you would have to be left with enough equity to enable you to buy a house on your own account ( perhaps with the aid of such mortgage as is reasonable to expect you to take ) and perhaps one large enough to give your daughters staying access.
The fact that she is cohabiting is relevant is that a Court WILL assume that her new paramour will be meeting part of the household costs and therefore her needs for maintenance are less than they would be if she were not cohabiting.
All my instincts tell me this looks like a 50/50 split.
In your case that amounts to £57,000 more for you that what your wife is prepared to concede. Your wife , frankly, has shot herself in the foot by rushing into a new relationship. because it makes it much more difficult for her to argue her needs justify an award higher than 50/50.
I think you need to bear this is mind - namely, whatever Paul and Heather McCartney do, neither of them will starve. But where resources are limited - as, let's face it, in most cases, they are -then the primary question is,
how can we meet the needs of the parties for a home and sufficient income to live on. Percentages are much less important than needs.
No solicitor can advise you on your financial position without knowing the full facts, and I can't either, but
presumably you have the form E's to show the lawyer and
that is a help. I'm afraid very often solicitors do take extreme negotiating positions for many different reasons and none of them benevolent. My initial feeling that your wife's claim is OTT for the reasons stated.