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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.

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  • happywithat
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14 Feb 08 #13862 by happywithat
Topic started by happywithat
My wife and I separated 7 years ago from a 9 year marriage. When we separated I took all of the joint debt (32k) and was made bankrupt for 5 years and paid it all off. I have a 17 year old son and have never ever not paid maintenance for him even when I was on my knees paying the debt off. I have been in the Royal Navy for 24 years and have recently left with a lump sum and pension. At the time of the separation and as I was bankrupt I could not afford to divorce my wife. She did not divorce me either. Now that she knows I have left the Navy she wants her part of my pension/lump sum. I will continue to pay her maintenance until my son is 18 and then only pay him an allowance directly each month as I already do now. She claims that as she put 18k into our house when we first got together she is entitled to it back. It is all in the hands of the solicitors but I am worried sick that she will get money that should be left for my son and for my new life out of the Navy. I live with my new partner of 2 years and we have a joint mortgage although I am paying over the odds as my previous bankruptcy affects who will give you a mortgage. I am also very worried about my son as his mum has told him that if he has contact with me then she will throw him out so for now we are contacting each other in secret which is ridiculous but I dont want to get him into trouble as she has been very cruel to him in the past but he wants to stay living up there as his friends are all there. Sorry to ramble but it is all happening. I look forward to some help - thanks.

  • DownButNotOut
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18 Feb 08 #14308 by DownButNotOut
Reply from DownButNotOut
It sounds like you never formalised the financial agreement upon separation.

Unfortunately, although this seems unfair, your wife may even at this late date be able to pursue a claim for ancillary relief.

She could feasibly claim against your assets and your pension.

It is a shame (for you) that you didnt formalise the divorce when you were bankrupt as the court would only have been able to award her a limited settlement.

Now that you are better off a court may make her a higher award.

On the bright side your son is almost an adult and she seems to have managed financially for the last 7 years. Her financial independence and not having young kids to care for work in your favour.

You havent described how you split your assets / money at the time of separation but if you still have the 18k she put into the house when you first bought it then i think she will be entitled to at least that back. In fact she is potentially entitled to 50% of your joint current assets.

I am sorry to hear about your son, there is no excuse for her behaviour on that front.

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