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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.


Extremely worried

  • ark13112003
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14 Nov 07 #6625 by ark13112003
Topic started by ark13112003
I am just starting off on the divorce road with my wife. We have been married for 15 years and have two girls 11 & 9 who will remain living with my wife after the divorce.

My wife does not work and I support all of the family currently. There is over £400K of equity in the mh which we want to sell and split the money to buy a house for each of us.

When I use the calculator, it consistently comes up with a split or 90% / 10% in her favour! I understand that she has a need for a greater house because of the kids, but surely this is taking the p*ss. Locally she would be able to own outright a 4 bedroom house and have £178K left in the bank whereas I would have a one bed flat and £130K morgage. It also estimates that I would need to pay 50% of my net salary as maintenance.

We have been discussing more reasonable 60 - 55% split in her favour as this would allow both of us to buy a place outright.

If I got this judgement, I would be forced into great hardship whereas she would be living in great luxury.

Can someone advise if it is reasonable for the two of us to agree a more realistic figure that would allow both of us to live reasonably or would the courts overturn this and impose this settlement?

My wife is being reasonable as I am and wants both of us to be able to afford to own a place outright, is this legally possible? I don't mind paying support for the kids and I have offerred to pay her SM until the youngest is 18 in order to get a larger split of the assets.

I'm absolutely terrified right now that I end up being done over by the courts even though we want to be reasonable.

  • Louise11
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14 Nov 07 #6630 by Louise11
Reply from Louise11
Hi Ark

If you BOTH agree to something then its unlikely the Courts will make a judgement on anything! They dont get involved unless you cant agree on something. In actual fact there is no need for the Courts to get involved at all if you agree a settlement, all you need do is agree to whatever and place before a Judge a Consent Order, i.e. its the agreement between yourselves placed before a judge who asks if you are both happy with it and rubberstamps it.
The calculator is only there as a guide. All this 90/10, 70/30 80/20 60/40 is only a guide, if there is enough equity to house you both to some degree of fairness then thats whats more likely to happen if you went the court path!

I suggest you both come to an agreement and try and work amicably towards that path and keep the courts out of it as long as possible.

Kind regards
Louise

  • Camberwick green
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14 Nov 07 #6632 by Camberwick green
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Hi and welcome,

As far as I am aware if you can make a financial settlement between you without involving the courts this is looked on favourably, you are not forced to do things through the courts if you do not wish to. You can simply state that all financial matters are agreed upon and they will not even ask for details, this goes the same with contact for your children.

If you can do it amicably then please do so, it will cost a lot more to wrangle through the courts with the help of solicitors and hearings and that cuts into any profit both you and your wife would gain at the end of the day.

  • Fiona
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14 Nov 07 #6639 by Fiona
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I'd ignore the calculator. It doesn't appear to differentiate between one party 'needing' a large share and when there are sufficient assets for the emphasis to move more towards 'sharing.' It also doesn't seem to account for the general rule of thumb that the larger the split is in favour of someone the less need there is for spouse maintenance. :S

I think you're doing fine and your approach is spot on. :)

  • Specialdad
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14 Nov 07 #6646 by Specialdad
Reply from Specialdad
Hi

I agree with louise. I never appointed a solictor. We agreed everything between us using mediation. We then used my wife's solictors to draw up the Consent Order and sort out the property details. The total cost to me was £370 for my share of the mediation and it cost my wife £1,200 including the divorce and financial settlement. It also keeps you on good terms and the children are happier as a result. As a single man i opted for a one bedroom flat and paying the CSA guideline of 20% of gross earnings as maintenance for two children. Also we agreed a split of 70/30 with her keeping the main house with me receiving a lump sum from her. Above all keep it civil and treat her with dignity and you will be much better off.

Regards

  • ark13112003
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14 Nov 07 #6647 by ark13112003
Reply from ark13112003
Thanks for all the good advice people.

I feel a lot better now.

Myself and my wife both want this to be done amicably and not scr*w each other over. Sure there will be negotiation between us, but neither wants the money to lead to bitterness, especially when there is clearly a pot of money that can provide a reasonable living for both of us to move on.

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14 Nov 07 #6656 by ark13112003
Reply from ark13112003
Thanks for all the good advice people.

I feel a lot better now.

Myself and my wife both want this to be done amicably and not scr*w each other over. Sure there will be negotiation between us, but neither wants the money to lead to bitterness, especially when there is clearly a pot of money that can provide a reasonable living for both of us to move on.

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