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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.


How do you deal with failing mediation?

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11 Jan 12 #305793 by xxxxhelpxxxx
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We had our first mediation on 16 Dec. We agreed that we would do our financial stuff and a few other bits (mostly done by me) and have a further meeting 6/8 weeks later. I think the initial joint meeting went quite well. I have kept my side of the deal and have done what discussed.

Amyway I got an email from the mediators saying they had been in touch with him about the next meeting and he has asked for a few more weeks because his financials are not ready.

I sent a reply saying that he had not even started doing them. He needs to do Company accounts, personal accounts and tax returns for the last 2/3/4 years. He has known that he needs to do accounts for a long time (since before I filed for divorce) but still has not done them. He has spent his time since our meeting messing around with computers; meeting his girlfriend and going out.

The mediation service said that if I felt he was deliberately stalling, I could go straight to court instead. I said that I did not want to be negotiating during the time that his child is born in less than a month. I do not know how I am going to be feeling emotionally. We are still living in the same house and his girlfriend lives nearby.

I just want everything over. What are the pros and cons of mediation failing and going straight to court?

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11 Jan 12 #305795 by LittleMrMike
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Er - that isn''t necessarily a case of mediation failing, is it ? Delayed - yes perhaps ; but breaking it off now and going to Court will take you far longer.

You can''t reasonably begin a mediation unless both parties'' financial situation is on the table.

LMM

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11 Jan 12 #305796 by xxxxhelpxxxx
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You''re right - maybe the title is not quite right. I have changed it a bit.

His company accounts were supposed to be in to HMRC and Companies House by the end of October - this is long after they were due. He is racking up fines both personally and company-wise. He has no intention to do them so has no clue about what his financial circumstances are, apart from taking money out of the company.

He says that he needs to set up a server to do his accounts on (he has more than 20 computers) and this takes time!! He has been trying to set up all this computer stuff for over 10 years and has not got anywhere yet!! He thinks he is running a multi million pound company but in reality it is a tin pot company with just him.

He had an affair with a young woman and her baby is due in less than a month. I know this does not have a direct effect on mediation but it gives a little background as to how I am feeling at the moment.

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11 Jan 12 #305799 by LittleMrMike
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If mediation is a possibility for you, it could well be less stressful and less expensive than the alternative of going through the Courts.

LMM

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11 Jan 12 #305810 by xxxxhelpxxxx
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That''s fair enough but what''s to stop him stalling and stalling? He has got nothing to lose by not doing his financial statements. He will continue to live in this house, he will continue to spend his money on his girlfriend, he can still continue to make our lives a misery. I will be left with nothing in the meantime, apart from a roof over our heads.

Until I actually move out I cannot claim anything as a single person. But if I move out there is no incentive for him to complete his financials. It''s a catch 22 situation.

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11 Jan 12 #305813 by dukey
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Of the two options mediation is by far the most cost effective, there are problems here, it seems he has not filed accounts for four years?, you also say its a tin pot company, can we assume it makes little money.

The problem with court is it can take an age and cost a fortune, its a rock and a hard place situation.

Court is no quick solution, think a year or more, then costs, if it goes all the way to a final hearing costs can run from 10k (the very best) up to 20k (not uncommon) or even more.

Given the two options maybe bite your lip and hold out for a bit longer before thinking about the court route.

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11 Jan 12 #305823 by xxxxhelpxxxx
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It''s quite a complicated situation with the company. It might seem quite simple to some but not to me :)

He is a contractor working in IT. He earns money (quite a bit) which is paid to the company. He was out of work for a year last year so took all the money out of the company to live on (we just about managed but had to cash in a small endowment).

I am waiting for a reply from my solicitor about protecting myself if I move out. I know everyone says to stay in the house, etc but it is affecting the mental health of our two daughters still living at home and I am sleeping on a camp bed, which is not going to be very good when I am on placement doing 13 hours shifts!!

I don''t want to go to court if I can help it. We don''t have a lot to fight over but I want to ensure that I don''t end up being penalised for the debts he has accrued through lack of doing his accounts.

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