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: 33544
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

I am trying to reach a financial settlement with my wife. I

Customer Question

I am trying to reach a financial settlement with my wife. I have offered her more than 100% of our net assets (as there is an ongoing income stream) which has been rejected. She currently holds the bulk of shares in my business and holds considerbaly more than 50% of the joint assets as a result. I am trying to sell my own house (she lives in the former family home) and have accpeted an offer. Her solicitors have blocked the sale unless I release a share to her, which I cant afford and she already owns more than 50% of the joint assets. Is it legal to block a sale when I dont owe her any money?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year 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 is the value of the assets - and what income do you each have?
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

Historically my income has been around £150,000 and hers £12,000 but my business is not doing so well at the moment so my income is currently is expected to be around £36k this year (I am a partner so my profits vary from year to year). The house sale will raise £168,000 which I've earmarked to pay last years tax bill, which is still outstanding and will leave zero left). Her solicitor is asking for £25k for her legal fees in order to allow the sale to go through. Based on the two form E's, her assets (the house and her shares in my business are) worth approx £775k whereas mine are worth around £550k out of which my pension is worth approx £525k, leaving me with very little.

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Has Decree Nisi been granted?
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No. I was told by her solicitor that no financial settlement could be agreed until after the decree nisi had been received. I assumed this was the next step but when I starrted to get no response from my wife or her solicitor I emailed the court who said that no decree nisi had been applied for (as at 13th March). When I queried this with her solicitor they have now said that they will do this at the same time as applying for a consent order. My feeling is they are delaying things on purpose, but I can't see why.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Are you sure that there has been no Decree NISI - not no Decree Absolute?
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Absolutely certain no decree nisi as the court sent forms that would be needed to apply along with their email telling me the status. They said the next stage is for them to apply for decree nisi.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
They are deliberately delaying that then - and frankly there is no good reason for doing so.
I suggest that you write back and say that unless they apply for the Decree Nisi within the next two weeks you intend to apply to the court to dismiss her petition so that you can file one of your own
At the same time make an immediate appointment with a Family mediator
www.familymediationhelpline.co.uk
and tell the other side that if their client does not wish to attend mediation that is fine - but you are doing so in order that you can make a financial application if need be
Point out that if they continue to try and prevent the sale of this property then the tax bill will rise and you WILL be claiming that from the Joint assets.
I suggest that you also confirm that your original (overgenerous offer) has a limited shelf life - and unless the current sale is authorised and the Decree Nisi applied for they can consider it withdrawn.
Please ask if you need further details
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

So presumably not pay the £25k. Her solicitors seem to imply that she needs proper advice. I agreed to pay her fees to get things sorted, but was thinking a few thousand, not nearly that much.

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
No do not agree to the £25,000 - it is excessive and would be even if they were behaving well
Clare
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 33544
Experience: I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
Clare and other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clare,
Thanks ever so much for your help on this. I did as you asked and arranged an appointment with a mediator and stated that I will apply to have the petition removed if they don't apply for a decree nisi with two weeks.
This seemed to have worked and they dropped the request for £25,000 upfront for legal fees. However they said they would allow the sale to proceed, subject to a caveat, being that if the conveyancing solicitor were unable to hold the funds in a "designated account" that I should instruct the conveyancing solicitors to transfer all proceeds to them to be held in joint names.
I didn't agree to this last point as it seemed to be giving my wife all of my sale proceeds with which I need to pay my tax bill.
The buyer is apparently getting nervous. Should I just refuse and let the sale collapse, explain the situation to the buyer and hope they are understanding? I feel I'm being blackmailed into doing as they ask. I know that's a strong term, but given my wife already holds more than 50% of our assets and I've offered more than 100% of out joint assets, they are being extremely unreasonable.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
Hold out and write to them saying that unless the tax bill is paid from this sale then it will become a matrimonial debt.
Say that you are close to losing the sale and that if that happens you will retain the property as your home and seek to have the tax bill settled form other matrimonial assets
Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.

thank you, ***** *****

Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Hi
My pleasure
Clare

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
< Previous | Next >
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Kasare

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    204
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
< Previous | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KA/Kasare/kasare.64x64.jpg Kasare's Avatar

    Kasare

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    204
    Solicitor, 10 yrs plus experience in civil litigation, employment and family law
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/TG/TGraham12/2012-7-17_81212_bigstockBusinessHandshake508163.64x64.jpg Thomas's Avatar

    Thomas

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    160
    UK solicitor
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JO/jojobi/2013-3-19_0265_maxlowryphoto.64x64.jpg Max Lowry's Avatar

    Max Lowry

    Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    7
    LLB, 10 years post qualification experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OS/osh/2015-7-7_19268_gettyimagesb.64x64.jpg Joshua's Avatar

    Joshua

    Lawyer

    Satisfied Customers:

    340
    LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/GL/Glossolicitor/2013-5-14_214834_TWMParkinsonWright.64x64.jpg Glos solicitor's Avatar

    Glos solicitor

    Family Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    2
    10 years experience in all areas of family law, now specialising in cases involving social services and children
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CL/clairep80/2013-8-25_191218_dreamstimexs267279822nd.64x64.jpg Clare's Avatar

    Clare

    Family Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    4598
    I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/HH/hhlaw/2015-12-8_22495_unnamedlanczosbicubic.64x64.jpg Harris's Avatar

    Harris

    Family Law Expert

    Satisfied Customers:

    1064
    Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters