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UKfamsol
UKfamsol, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 560
Experience:  Very experienced specialist family law solicitor, qualifed in 1994
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Type your legal question here My husband and I have separated

Customer Question

Type your legal question here My husband and I have separated due to his excessive use of alcohol and having caught him with another woman, he left the property last Saturday. I met with him yesterday to discuss the house and he is refusing to pay the mortgage anymore and said he is signing all rights over to me. His earnings is 48,000 per year and I am 5 months pregnant working part time earning approx. 150.00 per week. I also have a 13year old daughter living with me. I have asked him if he could continue to pay the mortgage until our baby is born in August but his response was 'Iam looking out for myself now and I will not be paying the mortgage anymore' I just want to know where I stand legally?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  UKfamsol replied 2 years ago.
Hello and thanks for your question

 

I need a bit more information to be able to answer:

 

Whose name is the house and mortgage in?

How much is the house worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage?

What other assets and debts are there?

Are you now intending to divorce your husband?

How much would a small 2 or 3 bed house in the same area cost?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

The mortgage is in my husbands name, however my name is on the deeds of the property. Fees were paid for my name to go on the property but my husband never followed through on the matter and the offer expired. he was informed of this by letter. he has savings of up to 27,000 and a pension of 12,000 per year and an annual income of 35,000 approx. A 2 or 3 bedroom house would cost approx. 700-750 to rent per month. To buy would be in the excess of 200,000. I intend to divorce my husband and he is out of the property as of 2 weeks ago approx. Can you help?

Expert:  UKfamsol replied 2 years ago.
Hello again and sorry for the delay in getting back to you.

1) You have clear grounds for a divorce based on your husband's behaviour. I would advise you to issue divorce proceedings as soon as possible, as the only way to get a legally-binding agreement in relation to finance and property is within divorce proceedings. That can be either a consent order (if you reach agreement) in which case neither of you will need to go to court, or a final order following contested proceedings, both equally binding.

2) Given the enormous difference between your husband's income and your own income, you have a strong case for maintenance pending suit ie maintenance for yourself until a final financial order is made by the court to cover all the matrimonial assets as well as maintenance.

3) Rearding the financial situation overall, you haven't said how much the house you are currently living in is worth, nor have you said how much is the total mortgage on that property. Without those figures, I can't give you a detailed answer. But what I can say is that once a divorce petition has been filed at court, if you & he cannot agree how the assets should be divided, either side can apply to court to ask the court to decide how the matrimonial assets ahould be divided. The matrimonial assets are everything in your name, everything in his name and everything in joint names, including any savings of either of you, and pension entitlements. The court could for example order that the house is put into your name (if it is not already) and that your husband pays a lump sum to reduce the mortgage to a level that you could manage, and in return, you might agree not to make a claim against his pension - this is only a suggestion, and I don't have all the information necessary to be able to predict what the court might order.

However, going to court is expensive, time-consuming and stressful, so if you can possibly reach agreement with your husband, that would be better. You can negotiate either between yourselves, or via solicitors' correspondence or via mediation. Mediation is a round-the-table discussion with you and your husband, together with a trained and neutral mediator, whose aim is to help a you both reach a fair and workable compromise. Here's where to find a family mediation service local to you:

http://www.familymediationhelpline.co.uk/find-service.php

The family court anyway now requires the parties to have attempted mediation before it will consider an application to court.

If mediation fails and you do decide to apply to court or you just want some face-to-face legal advice, here's where to find a specialist family law solicitor:

http://www.resolution.org.uk/findamember/

From what you say, ir wasn't clear to me whether the house was now in your sole name or not. If it is not, then you need to register a matrimonial homes right of occupation at the Land Registry, to protect yourself aginst the possibility that he might try to sell the property without your being aware of this.

Either way, you need to inform the building society of the situation, and see if they will give you a payment holiday or at least allow you to make interest-only payments for a while, to give you a breathing space.

You can claim child support from him as soon as the baby is born. Here's where to find out more about child support:

http://cmoptions.org/

If you are no longer being financially supported by your husband, then you should be eligible to claim working family tax credits and child tax credits. The best place to get help with claiming benefits is the Citizens' Advice Bureau. Here's where to find their local branch:

http://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/index/getadvice.htm

I hope I've given you some idea on how to move forward, and that this helps.

Thanks and best wishes...


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