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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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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.


advice needed

  • tornado
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24 Feb 08 #14901 by tornado
Topic started by tornado
i am currently married, and nearly into my 17th year. I had an affair which lasted 12 months and finished in August 07. My wife also had a relationship of some kind with another man, which finished in Dec 07.
Of late the realtionship has become unbearable, lots of shouting, some aggression and the police have become involved making two visits to the house. I have left the property once for a period of a week, then decided it was in my best interests to move back in.
We have 3 children 14, 12 and 9 and there is not enough equity in the house for either of us to go our separate ways.
My wife's mother, sisters and brother all have their noses in my marriage which has not helped, and has led to a breakdown in the relationship.
I currently am the biggest earner - 43k, my wife earns about 8k, thus i pick up all the bills for mortgage, utilities, council tax, phone etc.., she buys the food for the family home. She cannot afford to pay the mortgage or the upkeep of the home.
What i need to know is what are the procedures for the sale of the house ?
Can i be evicted from my own home, and still be expected to pay the mortgage and all the utitilities
Do I have a legal right to remain in my home with my children ?

  • Fiona
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24 Feb 08 #14952 by Fiona
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You need to reach a financial settlement and have it turned into a legally binding document. However, before you can do that you need to apply for divorce. The usual legal advice is to stay put until a settlement has been agreed/imposed.

All your/hers/joint assets (including pensions ) minus any debts form the value of the matrimonial 'pot' to be shared. The priority will be the housing of the children, although it isn't the only consideration. The factors taken into account include -
    the income, earning capacity, property and other financial resources which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future;

    the financial needs, obligations and responsibilities which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future;

    the standard of living enjoyed by the family before the breakdown of the marriage;

    the age of each party to the marriage and the duration of the marriage;

    any physical or mental disability of either of the parties to the marriage;

    the contributions which each of the parties has made or is likely in the foreseeable future to make to the welfare of the family, including any contribution by looking after the home or caring for the family;
You can check out the state help your wife will be entitled to at www.entitledto.co.uk

  • Ade
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25 Feb 08 #14957 by Ade
Reply from Ade
Hi

You have'nt mentioned that you are going through a divorce? But seem to be worried about the house. Nor have you mentioned about talking to her about how you feel. It takes two, and its great that you have both been honest about what you have done. Ignore what the family says or at least try to, especially if they are playing the blame game. But you both should be talking to each other. I know its hard at times and I know how you feel as i have been there myself, and your probably being torn so many ways. Im sure at times you dread coming home and worry about what your going to row about tonight as soon as you come in. But I'm sure your wife does too.

The advice I would like to share with you on your concerns you have raised is to try and stick it out in the house for as long as you can, not as a male thing at all - your probably thinking "its my house too and i pay for most of it" but do it for the kids. Only you can know what your going through, but whatever happens to you relationship, you will, i can assure you, feel better for staying in the house with the kids. It might even give you both a chance to talk. If things start to get heated, go for a walk or a drive, go see a mate or whatever it takes to swallow your pride. Rowing solves nothing when you get to this stage so don't if you can help it. Just walk out and let things cool down - your not running away at all.

Having the Police called is not good for anyone, I know I had my wife pull a knife on me, when I started to question her about an affair she was having when i found out about her. She got backed into a corner and I found out the easiest form of defence is attack, and its not nice. Even more so when my youngest at two years old witnessed it, and that opens up a whole can of worms with the social services (which i got blamed for calling - even though the police notified them).

She was arrested for common assault and of course things got worse after that. I was scum for calling the police but i'd had enough. In previous rows I'd been spat at, punched, kicked etc etc. But I stayed in the house for the kids. I even got accused of not being a real man because a real man would have left!! I did on occasion go for the evening or day but always came back or took the kids out for the day just to let things cool down. My ex threatened me with so many things like not seeing the kids again and taking me for everything, saying she was locking me out of the house and changing the locks when I left for work, all of which she cant legally do, but at the time i did not know this and i was distressed beyond belief. You can't be evicted from your own home if you jointly own it. But if you keep having the Police called a solicitor will latch onto this and might go for a court order to keep you from the house.

In realistic terms your wife can't have everything off you post divorce, but in view of her earnings she will probably try and go for a much as she can, unless you both agree amicably, its not her fault, it will be what the solictors will tell her is best, anything less weakens her position if you go to court. But if it does go that far, the courts will have to take into account your needs as well, you wont be expected to live in a cardboard box. Try mediation or counselling before divorce if you have'nt already. Divorce isnt cheap for either side. The courts will look to protect the kids interests, and for a fella married to someone with a small income that generally means you'll get a percentage of the house when it is sold, and you might be asked to sign the deeds over to her. Unless you both have assets sufficient to support you and them too which you say you dont. Selling the house and dividing it up probably wont happen straight away nor will you find yourself having to pay two mortgages. But it depends on your circumstances. Currently I pay for my kids (20% of my net pay) she has a percentage of my pension, and the house is in her name. I get a percentage from the proceeds of sale of the house on one of a number of triggers (co habiting, death, remarriage or my children becoming adults) and i dont pay any of the bills, mortgage or indeed any arrears she has run up!!

Sorry for rambling on, but I hope it helped, like me im sure you want to do whats right for your children. Up sticks and leaving permanently won't, if you do go down the divorce route, and i hope you dont, doing whats best for the kids should be both your goals not whats best for either of you financially. You will be hit in the pocket but so will she and its a shame both sides dont realise this beforehand.

I hope things work out for the both of you...


Ade

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