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Ask Clare Your Own Question

Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33015
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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I am the sole owner of my house. I have lived there for 16

Customer Question

I am the sole owner of my house. I have lived there for 16 years with my 4 kids from my first marriage. My eldest son is severely autistic with special needs. I got married 3 years ago and my new russian wife came to live with me in february 2012. In may 2014 after she obtained her indefinite leave to remain stated she is moving out and taking her son ( my stepson) and our son who is 2. She packed all items in boxes and bags left them in my house she would every day leave home 8.00 and come home with her 2 boys between 20.00 and 22.00 hours have a shower and go to sleep. She then forced me to write letter to russian embassy saying that i gave my free will to allow my son to go to russia. She then went to russia with her 2 boys and plan to come home this friday. I have lived like a single parent since 25 may looking after my 4 kids. None of my kids want her back she made our life very difficult and put me in approx 30000 in debt. I have decided to change my door locks and have made it quite clear to her not to come knocking on my door. I dont want confrontation with my wife at my doorstep. Do i need to call the Police. I dont have a solicitor i have no savings just borrow money from friends.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
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 old are your older children, and are you willing to start divorce proceedings?
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 you each have?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,


Thank you for your email.


My children from my first marriage who all live with me their ages are as follows:-


Eldest daughter just turned 18 this month and in 3 weeks time will be going to University in South Wales. I will need to financially support her.


Eldest son is 16 and severley autistic with learning difficulties he attends special school and uses a wheelchair, he will be continuing with his education until he is 19. I am his sole main carer.


My second son has just turned 13 in July this year and goes to school.


My youngest daughter turned 11 in January this year and goes to school.


My wife has 2 children her first child is 6 from her first marriage and the second son is our son who is 2 years old.


so in total 6 kids and my wife lived in the 3 bedroom house.


April this year my wife got her indefinite leave to remain in UK and 6 weeks later on 25th May my wife made her statement that she has no wish to live with my children and wants to live by herself as she is entitled to various benefits. We have lived separately every day my wife would spend all day at her friends house she moved all legal documents to her friends house and packed up her items and put them in boxes and bags she took all photos of the walls and took out the wedding photos and emptied all frames. My wife took of the curtains and put them in her boxes telling me that when she finds accommodation she will be moving all of her items. My wife then said she was going to go to Russia with her 2 boys forced me to write a letter to russian embassy saying that i give my free will to allow our son to go to Russia. The verbal abuse during the past 18 months from her was getting worse and the 6 weeks prior to leaving every night. The abuse was such that she also abused especially my 3 children and make them do so many household chores including getting my youngest son to bath his older brother on a daily basis. My 3 youngest children were not allowed into the tv and dinning rooms for the past 2 years. My eldest sons mental health deteriorated so fast in the past 20 months he now does not eat unless i feed him he his now in a wheelchair.


My wife to this date has not apologised there has been a series of emails recently and she said everything i say is a complete lie. i have enough independant evidence.


i Married my wife in Cyprus on 5 September 2011, I paid my wifes mortgage and credit cards in December 2011. My wife then transfered legal ownership of her russian apartment to her mother in December 2011. My wife came to uk in February 2012 our son was born in April 2012. My wife got her indefinte leave to remain in April 2014 and on 25 May 2014 decided to leave me.


I purchased my house in November 1998. I have paid of all of my mortgage 8 years ago (2006) the house is valued at say about £230,000. The house is under my sole name.


I paid all of my wedding costs borrowing money from my dad.


I financially supported my wife and all 6 children.


I work full time and have worked full time since March 1989 and prior to meeting my wife had been a single working parent for 9 years.


I live in a 3 bedroom house. My in laws would come on my wife's request without any consultation from me on numerous occassions and would stay for months at various times there were 10 people living in the house.


My wife's ex husband came a number of times to see his ex wife (my wife) and their son and how he got my address i don't know.


My wife insisted on the most expensive items and over our short period of marriage i have spent about £30,000 approx on her. I am in great debt my credit history during the period of marriage has suffered so much no body would lend me any money. i had debt agencies knocking on my doors. I never had financial problems before in my life. My wife wants and she would make sure she gets.


My wife never worked in paid employment in the UK and she set up her beauty business on 28 May 2014 this year.


The 6 weeks before my wife left to go to Russia, her daily routine was that she would leave the house at 08:00 every morning drop her son of to school (my youngest daughter who attended same school had to walk there). This was upseting i had bought my wife her car by borrowing money from my dad. My wife would spend all day at her male friends house with my son and come home at between 20:00 and 22:00 hours, shower her 2 boys and have a shower herself have a daily argument with me and go to sleep. This was a daily event from 25 May until 5 July when she went to Russia with her 2 boys.


My wife with the support of her friends looked for rented accomodation and then realised as she does not have regular paid income it would be difficult and asked me on number of occassions to be a guarantor of her accomodation. i explained that she knows of my financial position i have no savings and credit history is very bad. I cannot give what i don't have.


My wife suggested that i moved to my dads house with my children so she can stay in my house with her 2 boys. I said no because this has been our house my children youngest 2 were born here. Also why should i move out of my house which i had lived since November 1998, my wife has only lived in this house for 2 years. my eldest son is severely autistic and his whole routine would change causing him further mental deterioration of health.


Since 25 May i slept downstairs on the couch and my wife slept with her 2 boys in our bedroom, my wife took my son out of his cot and put him in our bed i was told that there was no space for me.


Since my wife's departure atmosphere in the house has changed all kids can sit in tv and dinning rooms when they want. My dad comes to visit us as he was banned by my wife to visit on daily basis which he had done for the past 10 years to support me when i was a single parent.


the social workers come once a week they also note the improvement in the atmosphere in the house. The house is a happy household. My children do not want there step mother back.. I emailed my wife several times to get dialogue in sorting out our differences she has not engaged and i advised that i have changed the door locks and i will not be opening the door. I pointed out my wife has had 3 months to find suitable acommodation which was her wish and i will send all of her items which she has packed in boxes and bags to her new acommodation.


My wife has not indicated any compromise. My children and myself are all sick at the thought that she will come back and continue daily arguments with all of us. It is my house and i changed my door locks giving my wife prior knowledge by several emails before she departs Russia. i have advised her that she should find alternative accomodation prior to comming back to UK even if that means she can stay at her friends house. After she has sorted out her accomodation we can then discuss suitable arrangements for our son. I am happy to financially support my son as best as i can.


I also have one buy to let property which has a mortgage and my ex wife who is a paranoid schizphonia lives there. Value of property probably £90,000 with a mortgage of £75,000. I had purchased this property i think in July 2011.


Also in July 2011 my dad put my name on his property as joint tennat in case he died to avoid inheritance tax which i think only takes effect after 7 years. My dads' property is valued at £300,000.


As you can see from above i got married in September 2011 my wife separated from me on 25 May 2014, i spent so much money on her including wedding costs, paid her credit cards and her £10,000 mortgage on her apartment, all visa applications for her and my step son. i purchased a BMW car for her paid all road tax and Car insurance as one lump sum payment of £900. The value of properties has gone down since september 2011. I am in Debt of about say £21,000. I have no savings and no one would lend me any money.


Do the courts look at the length of the marriage? Do the courts look at what Assets we both acquired during our marriage? Do the courts look at the wealth accured from the assets during the marriage. Do the courts also look at my financial support to my wife. I am the sole person who paid for my entire wedding in Cyprus, paid for my wife's wedding dress and all costs for flight and our 2 week honey moon in Cyprus. In return after accuring so much debt so that my wife can get her indefinite leave to remain in UK, she has made her position clear.


I don't know if it helps but the first time i met my wife's ex husband he told me that his ex wife (my wife) had taken his son out of Russia without his permission but he managed to trace his son. My wife said to me that she transfered her apartment to her mothers name during our marriage in december 2011 to her mum because she was not going back to russia until her son turned 18 as she expected problems with her ex husband. Now they are best of friends and my wife did say that she separated from her ex husband because he had an affair with another woman who he later married. to be honest i dont know what to believe, my problem is i take on face value what people say and judge them on my standards. I now realise everybody have different standards.



My wife says she knows all her rights, before marriage she stated that she would never take anything from me which was mine as she was not that type of woman. Now she tells me that she is only going to claim what the english legal system would allow her to claim and that it is not her wish but what she is required by law she can claim.


The thought of going through another divorce does not appeal to me. I offered mediation service and she has refused.


I understand that she will be comming back to UK today. My wife sent me a email a couple of days ago and said that everything i say is a lie, she will be comming back and that if i have anything to say to her i should say to her face. My wife has also said that she expects to get 2 set of keys to the house when she returns.


I have spoken to the Police they said that they do not get involved.


I understand that i will not be getting any legal aid..I dont think my wife will get legal aid.


I have never claimed any money for my step son. I have never claimed any child benefit for my step son.


I have claimed child benefit for my youngest son and child tax credits..


Can you please advise as to what my options are. Just writing this email is very upsetting. I have decided not to open my door today to my ex wife if she comes and therefore not get involved in any arguments especially as it would be very upsetting for all kids.


I look forward to your reply...


Thank you,










Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
As I think you are aware your ex does have a right to return to the Matrimonial home unless or until there is a Court Order excluding her from the property.
However if your ex does apply for an Order to return to the property she is likely to be disappointed since it is clear that your minor children need to remain in the property and that it would be easier for her to live elsewhere than for you to do so.
Indeed I would suggest that you consider apply for an Occupation Order yourself on the basis that you need to protect your children - and you have evidence form Social Services that her absence has been of benefit to them all.
In terms of the financial settlement the fact that this is a short relationship means that there is no chance of your ex receiving 50% of the equity - or anything close.
However the fact that you have a small child together and she has left her homeland means that a lump sum payment will be ordered - which would be smaller if you can raise a mortgage immediately - than it will be if she has to wait
I hope that is this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 2 years ago.



Thank you for your answer.


At present how much do you think the court would ask me to pay my ex wife as a lump sum?


Do any of the following help my case.


My wife is 31 years old. I am 48 years old. I dont have much working life left.


My credit history is very bad due to the fact that i was supporting my wife.


My wife had an apartment in Russia which i paid £10,000 to clear her mortgage, she decided to transfer the apartment to her mum. would the court take this factor into consideration.


I will be happy to pay maintenance to my wife for my son. I have asked my wife that my son stays with me 2 weeks every month as i want him to spend equal time with his brothers and sisters.


I owe my dad money for weddings and purchase of cars and general support for the care of my children. Do you think that it would be advisable for me to transfer my house under his name?



Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
No you should not transfer the property - any such Transfer would be reversed by the court and the fact that you have done it will be disapproved of by the court
The fact that she gave her property in Russia to her mother will be taken into account - as will the debts
It is impossible to give anything other than the roughest of guides as to the lump sum because there are so many factors involved - but anywhere between £30,000 if you can pay now and £50,000 or so if she has to wait until your youngest child is 18
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,


Thank you very much for your email.


I do apologise for not contacting you earlier. I was busy this weekend in sorting out school uniforms for my children.


Can you please advise as to how i can obtain a court order as you had indicated earlier? Do i need to obtain the Court order before my wife makes an application for a court order?.


I don't have much money and at time of writting i have received a letter from the Gas company saying that they will disconnect my gas supply as i owe them £600 aprox.


Just to update you i was told by Aeroflot airways that my son was on the plane to London on Friday 29 August. I have had no contact from my wife or my son and i don't know where they are residing. I have sent 2 emails and 1 text message and to date have had no reply. I am worried about them. I don't want to make things more difficult, but do you think that i should contact the Police?


Kind regards,




Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
So your ex has NOT attempted to return to the property?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,


Thank you for your email. i do apologise for the delay in responding been out to the bank to see if i can stop my gas supply being cut off with a short term loan.


My ex has not made any attempt to return back to the property. She has not responded to my emails and text messages. I did contact Russian airline Aeroflot who stated that my son was on the plane bound for London heathrow and landed 15 mins late but at 21:44 hours on friday 29th August. My stepson who is also with my ex wife is due to go to school tomorrow. I don't want to antagonise my ex wife but i was considering going to the Police to establish the whereabouts of my ex wife and my son. i am still legally married to my ex wife who stated on 25th May that she wants to live separately from my kids. I thought that she was staying with her friends but have no confirmation of this. I don't want confrontation with my ex wife and i don't want to neglect my duties as husband and father. When my ex wife was in Russia i did tell her that i was going to change the door locks as she had over 3 months to find alternative accommodation after she made it clear she did not want to live with my kids and myself. We never had any joint account so i do not have information as to any financial transactions that may have taken place. I don't even know if she is in this country. What do you advise?


I am going out again with my youngest 2 as i still have a few items that i need to get for my kids before they return back to school this wednesday 3rd September.


Kind regards,



Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
What is your current concern about the matter?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,


Thank you for your email.


My concern is the safety of my son and of my ex wife and my stepson.


I asked my ex wife not to come back into the house to protect my children who had been abused for a period of 2 years. I did not want all communication to stop. I do not want to lose contact with my son. I was hoping that my ex-wife would apologise to the whole family for what she had done and just maybe we can sort out differences to ensure all children and both parents lived like a family. My ex-wife had a period of 3 months when she has not indicated any apology or offered any compromise. I had in the past offered to go to mediation services which she point blankly refused.


Going back to your question i would like to know whether my son and ex-wife are safe and where they are living. I don't feel proud that i had changed the door locks and told them not to come back into the house but i had little choice as i could not allow the abuse of my children to continue. I dont like to hurt anyone. I am not that type of person i do have feelings for others but sadly these feelings are used by others and i always get hurt.


Are you advising that i should not contact the Police and not look for details as to where my ex wife is living with my son.?


I look forward to your response.


Kind regards,




Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
There is no reason for reporting the matter to the police.
You told your wife not to come back and she has chosen not to.
If you believe that your child is at risk then you can ask the police to do a "safe and well" check on the child - but all that will happen in that they will confirm the child is safe and well.
If you wish to take the matter further then you would need to instruct an enquiry agent
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,


My wife sent a email requesting my permision to allow her and 2 men and staff from the local authority to come to my house to take items. She has made a list but on the list are items which i had purchased. Although she had packed most of her items in boxes she had also left some items in her cupboard. My wife wants permission to stay between 4 to 6 hours and she has also stated that she will return the mobile that i had purchased for her and would leave me a contact number to enable me to contact her in an emergency only regarding our son. I dont want to argue with my wife over items that i had purchased but at the same time would like to make it clear that i had purchased the items, I dont want to sound petty what do you advise? Do i have any legal right to know where my son has been residing or would be residing? I am very upset about everything. I did not want things to end this way but then again my wife left me with no choice she had abused my children for nearly 2 years. I dont want to fight with no one.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
If you are happy for her to have the items - or some of them then simply email back and say that she is welcome to come and that you are happy for her to have xxxx even though you actually purchased them.
Say you do need to know where your son is living

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