Its been 5 years into my divorce, unco-operative husband refusing to sign the FDR papers. I have one more hearing before a full contested hearings. Any body have any idea how much a 3 days contested hearing cost. Can the pertitioner stop the whole procedure due to the huge cost involved and just live a separated existance.
I'm about to go away for the weekend, but can I ask you a few questions.
(a) If there is a contested hearing, will you be using a barrister ?
(b) Have either of you made any offers to settle or Calderbank offers yet ?
(c) Has your solicitor given you an estimate of the likely cost of all this ?
As we have been unable to communicate from the start of this divorce, I have been using solicitor under the legal aid help which is not free.
Because of the nature of my case, I have been told that I need a barrister.
A year ago I sold the matrimonial home which was in my sole name because I acquired the house because of my job and settle all the mortgage. I have since move to another house. Together, we have four children. The eldest is 27, the second just completed university, the third is 14 taking his GCSE and the youngest is 12. Their father had refused to work since the start of the divorce and had not paid a single penny to the upkeep of the children.
When I sold the matrimonial house, he accepted a £3000 cash payment via solicitor but had refused to sign the agreement in which he was given a percentage of this house when the youngest complete his education. He had sacked his solicitor telling the Judge that he did not understand the agreement. He told the Judge that it was an unfair division. He insisted that it should be 50/50 split. After I had paid off the debt he had incurr of well over £200K
It was mentioned that it may cost over £20K and I may come out worst off.
Unfortunately, I am very reluctant to offer any more than very general advice in a case which is thought sufficiently complicated to justify the engagement of a barrister. I simply do not have the full facts at my fingertips and there is, therefore, a high probability that any advice I might give could be wrong.
In reply to your specific questions :
1. Yes, it is of course possible to withdraw a petition and perhaps the clearest example would be if the parties became reconciled. But that is not the position in your case.
Such a course would leave you still in holy wedlock and, perhaps more importantly, as I understand it, your husband is making financial claims against you. So withdrawing a petition, or any claim you make in the petition for ancillary relief, is likely to mean that you have this financial claim still undisposed of and still hanging over you. So I would very strongly recommend that you discuss the matter with your lawyers.
2. It is perfectly proper for you to ask your solicitor for an estimate of the costs as he or she has the facts and can give you a reasonably accurate estimate.
3. I also think that you are perfectly justified in expressing concern to your solicitor about the costs of all this, because I think it is reasonable to assume that you have little capital if you have been granted legal aid, and as you say, it is not free. In general terms a Court has a duty to ensure that the costs are not out of proportion to the sums at issue.
4. If you were seeing your solicitor, ask about the practicalities / desirability/implications of claiming against him for arrears of child maintenance.
Thank you very much for your advice. At least I can now ask my sol. about calderbank which until now knew nothing about it.
My case is very complicated and so far I hove place all my trust in the hands of my solicitor who will only answer some of my questions put forward by me. At times, I feel that my questions had been ignored.