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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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my husband left 8 years ago, leaving me to make all mortgage

Customer Question

my husband left 8 years ago, leaving me to make all mortgage repayments on my own. He never paid any maintenance for my children who are now 19 and 18 respectively. They are still dependant upon me as they are at Uni.
My husband now says he wants 50% of the net profit from the sale of the house.

Surely the mortgage payments I have made on my own should be taken into consideration
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 before answering your question:

Is the house in jount names? If not, whose name in on the title deeds?
Are you planning to divorce?
What is the house worth and how much is the mortgage on it?
Is the mortgage interest-only, or capital repayment?
What other assets & liabilities are there?
How much is your annual income from all sources, and how much is your husband's income from all sources?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Good Morning


 


In response to your queries, please find my comments below


 


The house is in joint names


Yes we should be getting the decree nisi soon


House is worth 230k with an outstanding mortgage of 85k, since the split I have paid 57k in mortgage payments


Capital repayment


No major assets or liabilities, my husband has a private pension of 7k, we both have vehicles worth about the same amount


My income is approx. 10kpa, my family have helped me keep up payments on the mortgage


My husband denies the fact that he is working, however I believe he is acting as a self employed market trader so I have no way of knowing what he earns


Regards

Expert:  UKfamsol replied 2 years ago.
Hello and thanks for the information

As divorce proceedings have been issued, either one of you can apply to court to decide how the assets should be divided, if you cannot reach agreement - but as going to court is stressful, time-consuming and expensive, to be avoided if at all possible. If you and your husband can reach agreement, you can turn that agreement into a legally-binding agreement called a consent order, without having to attend court, if the court approves the agreement that you have reached as being fair to both of you.

To negotiate, both of you need to give the other full details of all your ifnancial circumstances. If there was a contested court case, your husband would have to provide the last two years of his accounts, so his income would then become clear, so you are entitled to ask for that information now. You can negotiate either between the two of you, or via solicitors' correspondence, or via mediation. The family court anyway now requires the parties to have attempted mediation before it will consider an application to court. Here's where to find a local family medition service:-

http://www.familymediationcouncil.org.uk/find-local-mediator/

The court starts from the position that the assets should be divided 50:50 - unless there are good reasons why not - such as one person having a significantly lower income than the other, and/or providing a home for dependent children, then they could argue for a greater than 50% share. In your case, you do have a good argument to be given credit for - at the very least - the capital element of the mortgage repayments you have made over the past 8 years. And of course it is worth arguing that the whole amount should be taken into account, not just the capital element.

I am not clear from what you say whether your husband's private pension of £7,000 is a pension he actually receives, or is a pension pot for when he retires. If a pension pot, it is probably too small to be taken into account, and is not easily realisable. If an income that he receives now, on its own, it puts both of you at a very similar low level. If he does have another income from self-employment, then he might have a much larger income than you in total. It's also relevant whether he has bought another property since you separated, because that also counts as a matrimonial asset, and therefore the equity in that property to be added to the total value of all the assets to be divided between you.

If the whole amount that you have paid in mortgage payments since separation is deemed not to be a matrimonial asset, then the amount to be divided between you is £230,000 - £85,000 - £57,000 = £88,000. Therefore to buy him out, and have the house transferred into your sole name, you would need to offer him at least £44,000. Is there any way that you could raise a sum close to that? There is a risk that to settle the case, you might have to look at selling the house, so that you can pay him out of the net sale proceeds. .You might need to look at local estate agents and see what you could buy for around £100,000. I'm sorry to give you bad news, but unless your husband has other substantial assets, I don't think that £10,000 is a realistic offer to settle. BUT this is a very brief conversation we've had here,so I would strongly advise you to get some face-to-face legal advice - here's where to find a specialist family law solicitor:

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

I hope this helps and I wish you the best of luck.


Thanks and best wishes...

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