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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34236
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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My daughter is married to an alcoholic who has now been charged

Customer Question

My daughter is married to an alcoholic who has now been charged with drink driving 3 times over the limit. He does not seem to think he has a problem but despite advice from his own family he will not go to the doctor and seek help. As this could be the end of the marriage we would like to know how our daughter will stand financially - they have a house/mortgage which is in her name due to our son in law being unemployed at the time of purchase (due to alcohol problems and a in stay hospital) - their daughter is only 18 months old and anyh help/advice you can give us would be much appreciated
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.
How much is the house worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage
What other assets and debts are there and what income do they each have?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The house is worth approximately £230,000 and there would be about £180,000 left on mortgage. There are no other assets or debts. There income would be in the region of £20 - 22,000

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Do they each earn much the same?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I think our son in law would earn slightly more than our daughter - perhaps one third to our daughter and two thirds to our son in law. There is one other complication which I failed to mention - our daughter received a £40,000 redundancy package from Barclays which she is using to pay off the mortgage at a higher amount. If it did come to divorce would our son in law have any entitlement to any of that amount.

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Just to check - how much would a two bedroom property in the same general area cost to buy?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

A two bed property in that area would probably go for £190,000 to £200,000 + the prices have risen recently

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
HI
Just to check - could your daughter afford to stay in the property on her own given that his financial contribution would be 12% of his gross income at most?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I doubt it as she only works part time.

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
That is likely to be the problem
In the event that they separate then the priority for the family court is the safe and secure housing of the child until the child is 18 and on that basis her ex will not be able to force a sale of the property until the child is 18 or your daughter cohabits with a new partner.
At that point your daughter may well get a larger share of the equity to reflect the fact that she has the ongoing care of the child
Alternatively she could use her savings to pay off her ex - offering him £25,000 in fuss and final settlement
This is a matter that she could negotiate with her ex using Family Mediation (www.familymediationhelpline.co.uk)
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Clare
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Could I just confirm one thing - if the property is sold (it is my daughters sole name) would our son in law have a claim to any of the money

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Yes I am afraid that unless there is a court order dismissing all his financial claims then the funds are at risk
Clare