How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34272
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
13262538
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
Clare is online now

My wife (soon ex.) is driving me insane! She petitioned for

Customer Question

My wife (soon ex.) is driving me insane!
She petitioned for divorce and we are now trying to agree Child Arrangements and Finances in private but it seems we are talking different languages. I am currently paying her a Child maintenance fee of £660/month. She instead claims she "needs" £1000 a month (on top of a disproportionate amount of Wife maintenance). She's already on benefits worth £1100/month and soon she will receive SMI which will almost entirely cover our current Interest only mortgage. She is living in our matrimonial home with our 3 kids aged 6, 3 and 3 (twins). I am only interested to work our a fair Child maintenance amount at this stage.

My last year income was £41928 (Gross) made up of dividends and Salary (as per my TAX return) as I am a director of my LTD company. I have calculated the amount using the CSA website based on mutual arrangement of me keeping our children 1 or 2 nights a week. She is unhappy with this, as she is claiming I was paying her a salary last year and she thinks this should be considered as my personal earning, considered "diverted income" therefore added to the calculation. I disagree with this as I employed her in the her own rights but even if I add her Gross salary (as per 2012/2013 P60) to the calculation, the amount still comes with a £150/week figure.

Am I being unreasonable here or Am I missing any important factors to consider?

kindly advise

Marco
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Thank you for your question.
My name is Clare
I will do my best to help you but I need some further information first.
What spouse maintenance have you offered?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi


 


my proposal was to pay half of the mortgage, capped to £300/month (assuming the house won't be sold) until my youngest son turn 18.


Can you please advise whether can be beneficial for me as NRP to re-open the case to the CSA and keep it opened until matters are sorted out (either by agreement or court)?



I am currently paying


a) Child Maint £660/month


b) Full mortgage on the house


c) covering all house maintenance costs


d) Building and Mortgage insurances


e) A loan worth 102/month for her orthodontic (cosmetic) treatment



This is obliviously unsustainable if I will need to rent a 3 bed house+ all costs as it will be way beyond my financial means




 


MB

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
So for clarity - you are suggesting paying Child Maintenance at £660 a month and spouse maintenance at £300 a month?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Yes

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
What is the position on capital and what are the proposals with regard to the house?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

there is about 220000 equity in the property, and I have roughtly 3K into UK accounts and 17K EURO in Italy. I have have a pension pot worth 11K gross.


I have no assets in the UK business except cash into the business account worth 60K but I need that to run the business and keep paying me a regular salary as I am a freelance/contractor.


to complete the picture, not sure if relevant but I have to repay roughly 17K EURO to my father which helped me with the deposit of the house and have 4,5K TAX Liability to repay to HMRC at the moment.


She has prob around 2/3/K into her accounts + pensions pot worth 7/8K, not sure what she has abroad


As I said I'd like the boys to stay all together with the mother in the matrimonial home. She is has a degree in Mass communication and she's is studying AAT/Accounting. She will be able to work (she worked in the past as credit controller for 5 years)


Not sure at the stage what would be a fair agreement for house but given that she has the potential to find a decent job I don't see why it should not be anything different than 50/50 when sold.


 


 


Please let me know if this gives you enough facts




best, MB






 


 

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
When will she complete her qualification and how much can she earn if she returns to work?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

hard to say when she intend to complete as she is not willing to communicate much with me. however in her last employment 3 years ago she was on 25,000/year (not yet AAT qualified).


I am sure Jobcentre will push her to work when my youngest turn 5 but I doubt she can work full time at the beginning.

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
What is the pension provision of each of you?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I have £11600 in my pot. She has 8000 not sure how to calculate the CE

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
I am sorry but you are being Unrealistic about the settlement I am afraid.
The fact that she has the care of small children means that her work capacity will be restricted for years to come and this will be reflected in the eventual capital division
She will also have the benefit of a pension sharing order - unless she opts for a larger share of the equity instead
You are indeed overpaying on the Child maintenance a little - but she has a good claim for spouse maintenance and the figure you are offering is on the low side - half of the mortgage payment is usually a good rule of thumb
I hope that this is of assistance
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi


 


the mortgage fee we are paying at the moment is £395/month.


 


I am offering £300/month


 


Please advise if understood your answer wrong or I am missing something?


 


Marco

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
In that case offer to pay the full mortgage payment - it is an offer the court is likely to see as reasonable
Clare
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare,

 

I am going a bit out of the scope of this question but are you able to advise what would be a proportionate finance settlement for a "clean break" or at least a starting point? I know the question has not an easy answer but I want to use this trail for consistency.

I am currently filling in Form E, I can supply the figures you need.

Remember we will be applying for shared custody.

Please advise

 

M

 

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
How exactly will the shared custody work given that you work?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My mother will pick them up from school 3pm FRI and take them to School the following Monday 09:00 every fortnight, on "her" week-end week, we were thinking to have them for a sleep-over on my place 1 or 2 nights.


 


does it make sense?

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Thats fine and will not in anyway effect the capital settlement
How much is the house worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage.
How much does a three bedroom property in the same general area cost to buy?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I just got 2 formal valuations, both valued the house at £550,000, outstanding mortgage is £250,000.


 


A 3 bed property in a less sought part of the same town cost £350K-400K

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
In that case there is no chance of the court ordering the sale of the property until the youngest child is 18 or your ex cohabits
Ay that stage she is likely to get at least 60% of the equity
If she forgoes a Pension Sharing Order and spouse maintenance then a split between 70/30 and 75/25 is likely
This can of course only be the roughest of guides
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

thanks Clare.

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
You are most welcome I hope all goes well
Clare