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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.

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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.

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  • finfrey
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12 Jun 07 #740 by finfrey
Topic started by finfrey
Hi, Married for 16 yrs, separated for 4.5yrs.
I live with another woman now.
Since separation my health has deteriorated to the point where I receive an Invalidity Pension because I cannot work anymore.
There are no asssets from the marriage except that we both have equal pension plans.
My wife earns probably 3-4 times my income. My invalidity pension is not enough to cover my share of rent, food living expenses etc.so I am "kept" by my partner.
The problem is, I have asked my wife for a clean financial break, asking nothing of each other, but she is reluctant to agree to it "in case I am not being truthful". I have pointed out that she could in fact lose more than me by not agreeing.
Am I being reasonable in my offer and should I just press it anyway or just put the financial break to one side for now?
If my partner decided for example to put a car she purchased in our joint names would my wife have any claim to this?

  • DownButNotOut
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12 Jun 07 #742 by DownButNotOut
Reply from DownButNotOut

From what you have said it would seem that there is little to fight over in terms of assets, you also mention no children, so the main item to be agreed is spousal maintenance.

In view of your ill health and her greater earning capacity then it is possible that you might succeed in a claim for spousal maintenance against her.

In my view (again based just on what you told us) she is mad not to accept a Clean Break.

It is very hard to say but you might get a spousal maintenance award of perhaps 25% (+/- 10%) of her income.

She will argue (possibly successfully) that as you co-habit and your needs are met by your new partner then no spousal maintenance is due.

The is a risk that you she can claim a share of your assets. (but that goes the other way round too). This remains a risk until you agree a Consent Order that finalises the financial split.

  • LittleMrMike
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12 Jun 07 #748 by LittleMrMike
Reply from LittleMrMike

I have read what you say, and the reply you have received from Downbutnotout.

My first suggestion is - get down to CAB and get a benefit check, particularly Disability Living Allowance. It costs you nothing and might help you quite a bit.

Fighting over non-existent assets is obviously pointless. Downbutnotout is correct to draw your attention to the possibility of spousal maintenance, but without knowing the figures, neither of us could even guess how much, if anything, it might be. Your partner's income will undoubtedly affect it.

I hate to say this - but have you considered what the position might be if your circumstances change ? If you have a clean break, your right to spousal maintenance ends and cannot revive. If you have an order - even for a small amount - it can be varied. I agree with Downandout - if I were the wife, words like ' bite ' 'hand ' and ' off ' would br crossing my mind. For the reasons stated, I would think very carefully before offering clean breaks.Sorry to put a damper on things, but - - -

  • finfrey
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12 Jun 07 #749 by finfrey
Reply from finfrey
Thanks downbutnotout and mikemcnaughton for your advice.
Maybe I am being stupid, but I am happy to have a "clean break" with neither of us paying the other anything even though it is the case that my income is considerably less than hers.

Can anybody help on my question concerning my partner buying a car and putting it in joint names?
It is a particular concern of my partner's that anything she does financially to help me does not end up benefitting my wife as one can appreciate!

  • Louise11
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12 Jun 07 #750 by Louise11
Reply from Louise11
Hi Finfrey,

I'd be very careful about putting assets i.e. car, in joint names with your new partner, its just not worth the hassle until and unless you get a consent order from your former wife.
Anything that is in yours and your partners joint names will be taken into account by some solicitors, i doubt a Judge will see it like that, but best be on the safe side and sort out your finances with your ex before doing anything.

Kind regards

  • Princess Fiona
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13 Jun 07 #755 by Princess Fiona
Reply from Princess Fiona
SM isn't normally paid if you cohabit or remarry.

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