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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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Ancillary Relief - what to expect?

  • Dima
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07 Sep 12 #354519 by Dima
Topic started by Dima
I am currently preparing for the divorce and have only discovered that Ancillary Relief is a separate process and a must have if we want to finalize or relationship, which I do.

The situation is:
We have been married since 2004 (8 years) and separated in 2010.
I''m 30 and she is 35.
We have no children together, she has a son from unknown father.
We owe no real estate or other assets of value.
I have savings of about 6K, she probably has no savings.
My income is 40K a year, her income is around 12K plus she probably gets around 5-7 K in various tax credits and benefits.
Her lifestyle hasn''t changed much since I''ve left, as before I was on 25K a year and we lived quite modestly.
I currently live with a low income earner who I support.


The questions are:
If I apply for Ancillary Relief (because i want a clear break as I''m planning to get on a property ladder in 3-4 years)what claim does she have for my personal savings and share of my income?
If she demands maintenance payments can I defend myself or it''s essential to involve a solicitor?
How long would it take?

Any advice is highly appreciated!!!
Thank you!

  • hawaythelads
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08 Sep 12 #354558 by hawaythelads
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One thing the son will be dealt with as if it''s your own child as you were married or living with him for 8 years as a child so if the son is still a minor until he finishes secondary education you will be liable to pay 15% of your take home pay as child maintenance.If she pursues that line you will be liable.
All the best
HRH x

  • LittleMrMike
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08 Sep 12 #354577 by LittleMrMike
Reply from LittleMrMike
Dima, if I could answer that question I would not be living in a modest ( but comfy ) one bedroom retirement flat, but in a luxury penthouse !
To try and answer your questions :
1. You can represent yourself, no objection to that, but I think it''s fair to say this. If your wife, as she still is, is entitled to spousal maintenance it is possible you could have to pay it for a long time, so you need to weigh immediate costs v the prospect of maintenance liabilities which could last for a considerable period.
2. You asked if your wife would have any claim in the event of a divorce. In principle, she certainly does. It is extremely rare for anyone to come out of a divorce with nothing at all.
But the obvious question is how much and without knowing how much you have I can''t advise.
3. My inclination is that your liability for spousal maintenance will be limited if you have child support to pay. What is difficult in your case is that you are supporting a new partner on a low income.
This is rather controversial because we have known some judges on wiki who have told a SM paying husband who had formed a new relationship that its OK to form a new relationship, but as this is a voluntary decision you can''t expect any reduction in your maintenance because their circumstances have changed as a result of their voluntary choice.
This is true, but of course the other side of the coin is that if the same husband married an heiress, his SM would almost certainly be increased, and judges can''t have it both ways.
My suggestion is that it might be a good idea for you to pay for an an hour''s legal advice and make sure the lawyer knows all the facts about your finances and those of your ex. It may be money well spent. You could always try mediation and your wife might agree to do this, and it is much cheaper if you can finalise things this way.
LMM

  • WYSPECIAL
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08 Sep 12 #354578 by WYSPECIAL
Reply from WYSPECIAL
hawaythelads wrote:

One thing the son will be dealt with as if it''s your own child as you were married or living with him for 8 years as a child so if the son is still a minor until he finishes secondary education you will be liable to pay 15% of your take home pay as child maintenance.If she pursues that line you will be liable.
All the best
HRH x


CSA can only get involved if you''ve adopted otherwise its down to the "unknown" father. She must have some slight inkling as to his identity even if she has never told you.

  • Dima
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08 Sep 12 #354607 by Dima
Reply from Dima
Thank you!
LittleMrMike - the only asset I currently have is 6K in ISA, no property/car/pension/shares etc. Happy to split that.
The question that bothers me most is spousal maintenance and her possible entitlement to the assets I may own in the future. She has never had to give up work to run the house, and with the benefits that she now gets her life stile hasn''t really changed from what it was when we were together.

With regards to Child support, I''m quite surprised :huh:does living together make me liable for him until he reaches 18?, it looks like I''m being penalized for taking care of the kid.

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08 Sep 12 #354619 by LittleMrMike
Reply from LittleMrMike
Well, let''s see.
If you have only £6K in an ISA then it''s highly likely that it would cost you more than it''s worth to have a fight over it. If you''re saying that you split ti down the middle, I agree.
There is ( more or less ) absolutely no way that she could claim against future assets unless it is pretty well a cast iron certainty that you will receive them at a definite time in the future, I doubt very much whether this applies to you. So I think you can stop worrying about that.
Now, as regards the child. Wyspecial is right, unless the child is adopted the CSA has no jurisdiction.
However, the Court can make orders for '' children of the family '' ( section 23 (1)(d) Matrimonial Causes Act 1973 ) and in considering whether to exercise those powers the Court must have regard to the following provision :
(4)As regards the exercise of the powers of the court under section 23(1)(d), (e) or (f), (2) or (4), 24 or 24A above against a party to a marriage in favour of a child of the family who is not the child of that party, the court shall also have regard—
(a)to whether that party assumed any responsibility for the child’s maintenance, and, if so, to the extent to which, and the basis upon which, that party assumed such responsibility and to the length of time for which that party discharged such responsibility;
(b)to whether in assuming and discharging such responsibility that party did so knowing that the child was not his or her own;
(c)to the liability of any other person to maintain the child.]

So His Royal Hawayness was right to some extent. I honestly don''t know how the Courts would deal with this one.
LMM

  • soulruler
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08 Sep 12 #354625 by soulruler
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Unless you assume parental responsibility in law (via adoption) and especially as your stbx wife has made no attempts to disclose or chase the real father in this I believe that you should totally deny all parental responsibility for the son she had from a previous engagement.

Fall pray to acknoweldging that you are the father then you are a fool unto yourself and will be prosecuted financially until the end of time for that.

You shared a home with a woman who had a child from a previously and undisclosed relationship that does not mean that you wanted or do want to have either a close personal relationship to that child nor does it mean that you should be financially responsible for that child especially when the mother is claiming benefits from the state for the provision of that child.

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