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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.

fair share of household bills

  • Buster007
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17 Feb 20 #511454 by Buster007
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I know nothing about divorce law, I'm leaning as quickly as I can, but I do know the whole process changes people. form E is the most divisive piece of paper I've ever seen, only one winner in all this, Solicitors!!

  • Chevette
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19 Feb 20 #511487 by Chevette
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Hi All, any ideas if my settlement proposal seems fair ? ....or too fair?!

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19 Feb 20 #511489 by WYSPECIAL
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Unsure from your posts what you are hoping to ring fence and what the total assets are.

You mentioned £40k of pension but later posts suggest your pension pot is worth over £500k more than hers. Plus you want to ring fence £210k of equity in the matrimonial home?

Your later posts suggests the total pot is worth £1.264 million.

£657k your pension
£109k her pension
£80k BTL equity
£418k FMH equity.

Your proposal gives you £1m and her £264k.

Looks very heavily in your favour and you earn more.

Do you think she is likely to accept this offer?

How big is FMH?

What has your solicitor, who knows the area and is an expert, advised?

  • Chevette
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22 Feb 20 #511545 by Chevette
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Hi what I mean is I am hoping to ring fence pensions that were accrued during the marriage, which is me £168k her £109k- I started my pension in 1988, she started hers in 1998. Her total pension pot is approx £168k. we got married in 2009 the vast majority of her pension was earned during the marriage, the vast majority of mine was earned before the marriage. There are no kids and we have both always worked.
My proposal is to simply split everything that was accrued during the marriage 50/50 and safeguard what I had accrued before meeting my wife.

Equity in properties if both sold
Flat £72k
House £418k
Total £491k

Deed of trust signed 4 years ago to protect money I bought into the house which I owned before meeting my Wife. It says if getting divorced the first 210k goes to me then remaining equity is split equally.

So that lowers FMH equity to £208k
Also if properties are not sold it saves £30k in fees, so property equity would become
FMH £230k
Flat £80k
Total equity 310k
Ring fence pension £27,500 owed to wife
Financial settlement to wife £155k + £27,500 of my pension

If both properties are sold after fees she gets £140k + £27,500 pension.

I propose to let her keep the flat with the attached mortgage of £105k. It will pay her an income of £500 per month. Plus cash of £75k. She will also have £27,500 transferred from my pension to hers…..

The house is 4 bedroom house. The solicitor I am using is not based in my area, does that matter?
they have advised her reasonable need is a 2 bed flat in the area. They think the deed of trust should hold.

I think my wife is out for my blood & would not accept this offer. I have already tried to explain to her that as she has now cancelled mediation it could cost £40-£50k collectively in legal fees plus if she insists on both properties being sold, that will cost £30k and take possibly over a year to sell as the market so flat. so thats approx £80k less we will have for a settlement, which means £40k less for her.

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22 Feb 20 #511547 by WYSPECIAL
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So do you propose to equalise pensions accrued during the marriage so everything is a straight 50:50 split or are you trying to keep pensions out of the equation?

If you look at the total pot the split is something in the region of 80:20 in your favour and your the higher earner.

If her reasonable need is a two bed flat then so is yours.

Does the rental flat generate a profit of £500 per month or do mortgage payments and other costs have to come out of that? Has she given any indication that she wants to have the responsibility of a rental flat in a different area to where you live?

Why are there such large fees if either property is sold?

She may prefer the FMH to be sold, which would release far more equity, giving her cash to put towards buying a home. This would enable you to keep the rental flat and save you borrowing money.

Transferring relatively small amounts of pension may not be economically viable. Not even sure where you have got the figure of £27,500 from?

Why not suggest something along the lines of:

Flat equity £80k
House equity £230k
Your Pension £168k
Her Pension £109k

TOTAL £587k

If you really want to keep the FMH and can raise the money to keep it offer her £293.5k cash and you each keep your pensions and you keep the flat.

If you don't want to keep FMH, or can't raise the money, sell it which if you split the fees for selling would mean £287.5k to her and still leave you with £130.5k cash as a deposit on a new home plus your pension and the rental flat.

  • Chevette
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22 Feb 20 #511559 by Chevette
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Thanks for your reply WYSPECIAL
The background is that I had all the assets when I met my Wife, she had a small share in a house that was worth £10k & nothing else.
I had worked since age 16, bought properties improved them sold them on to be able to afford the current FMH which I purchased with a large deposit before I met my Wife. I did not get married until I was 40, So I want to minimise my losses. She has cancelled mediation & refuses any dialogue on a settlement so I assume she is trying to get as much as possible from me.

This is why the settlement split may look heavily weighted in my favour but I had all the assets when we met….All I want to do is protect some of it, which is why we both signed a DEED OF TRUST to hand me £210k and split remaining equity 50/50. She was also haps to sign this….at the time.

I would prefer that pensions were not part of the settlement or if I have to, give her the least amount of my pension as possible. Therefore I want to ring fence pensions if possible, pensions accrued during the marriage, hers is £109k mine £168K, difference £55k 50/50 split £27,500- have I got that calculation wrong?

Rental flat gives £500pm income after mortgage & agency fees taken out. She refuses all dialogue so don’t know if she wants the rental flat or not. Agents manage it & it is no hassle to own.

Selling fees are;
FMH if sold for £625k, Mortgage is currently £185k,
Fees, legal approx £2,000
High street estate agent fees @ 1% + vat =£7,500
Mortgage redemption fees @ 7%=£12,950 TOTAL £22,450

Rental Flat mortgage is £105k
Legal fees approx £1,500
High street estate agents fees £1850 @ 1% + vat = £2,220
Capital gains tax approx £5,000 TOTAL £8720


Re Your settlement suggestion,

I don’t understand your settlement calculations,
Firstly I thought that pensions were treated differently as they are not liquid cash. So giving her a cash settlement to the same value as the pension does not seem correct to me, I would have thought that should only be released when either or both retire, if they want the cash now they should be offered less as it is not a liquid asset. also the ring fenced difference in ours, I calculate it to be approx £27,500. In any case I simply could not afford anything like a £200k plus payout to my wife

So My calculation would be;
House equity after DOT £230k
Flat equity £80k
Total £310 50/50 split £155k

Pension ring fenced total due to her is £27,500

So she would get £155k plus £27,500 from my pension when I retire.
My offer is keep the flat with the equity in it of £80k. she will have a mortgage on it of £105k but will have a net income of £500 pm.
Plus I will give her £75k cash. So her settlement adds upto £155k but has the bonus of an income. She can put the £75k down as a deposit on a new property and will then own 2 properties .

If she refuses it may take a year or so to sell the house and the selling fees would lessen her settlement by £15k.

am I being naive or is this fair?

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22 Feb 20 #511564 by WYSPECIAL
Reply from WYSPECIAL
I understand what you are saying about pensions and the term ring fencing now however you are mistaken, if it is decided that she will have some of yours then she gets it now not when you retire. It will become her pension. The cost implications of transferring a relatively small amount may be prohibitive.

It’s understandable that you want to protect your pre marital assets but when you get married you agree and sign up to sharing everything.

You know your ex. Do you think she will accept your suggestion?

It may be cheaper to be more generous and accept that you will have to offer her more than you want to now rather than spend lots of time, money and emotional energy arguing about it.

Has she given any indication of what she wants?

What advice has your solicitor offered?

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