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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34744
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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Question (family solicitor): With reference to my

Customer Question

Question for Clare (family solicitor):
With reference to my previous query Order ID:15044620-577Background:Following the contact we had Feb-15, my sister's husband realised he couldn't afford to support her & live separately, so he u-turned & persuaded her to stay. Shortly after he sold the house & moved them to the other side of London, completely isolating her.He is now saying he wants a divorce, and is telling her she has to leave the family home. It appears he wants to keep their daughter (now 14 yrs), so he can then keep the house. He is incredibly controlling & manipulative, and although my sister reassures me there has been no physical abuse since they moved, there is clearly evidence of psychological abuse. He has moved her to the middle of nowhere & she can't drive. She has no access to any money & is completely isolated. He verbally abuses her daily & has told their daughter that she must choose between them.Questions:
Is there any risk to my sister's situation (stake in the property etc) if she leaves & moves back in with my parents?
As she has been a stay at home mum since my niece was born, and her husband works night shift, is she allowed to move with my niece, even if her husband objects?
I'm assuming if she does leave & move to my parent's with my niece, her husband could sue for custody? What would be his chances of succeeding?
If she moves with my niece, would she then be able to file for divorce & force him to sell the house? How long would this process last? (I'm assuming he won't be cooperative)Many thanks.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
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Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
HiThank you for your new questionI am sorry thing have got your sister now willing to start divorce proceedings?Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I hope so. Her self esteem is so low, so she'll keep taking him back. But he is now saying he will file for divorce, so hopefully that's the push that she needs. Does it make a difference who files?
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Are she and her daughter close?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Yes, but she's also fairly close to her Dad. He's promised her a dog & horse riding lessons, and has said she must choose who she wants to be with.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Clare. Please can you advise when I can expect an answer? Many thanks.
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
My apologies for the delay
Do you know how much the house is worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage?
What income does her husband have?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I believe they bought the house last year for about £370k, and it's likely to stI'll be worth about the same. At a guess, I'd say the mortgage left on it is around £170k. He earns about £60k per annum.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
My sister isn't earning, and has been out of work since he moved them last year. Her primary role has been raising the children.
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
How much does a two bedroom property in the same school area cost to buy
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
About £250k
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Hi Clare. It's been well over 24 hrs, and I'm still waiting for a response to my questions. In the interests of time, you could have asked all of your questions in one go. Please advise how long I will have to wait, and whether I should transfer the query to another expert.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
HiMy apologies for the delay - I was travelling to top up my vitamin D in the sunshine.As of ate last year the kind of abuse that your sister is facing is just as much a crime as physical abuse and her husband could be prosectued - (assuming of course that your sister was brave enough to speak out)Of even more use is that if she can get a letter fromher doctor confirming that her anxiety and low self esteem are a result of his behaviour she should be entitled to Legal Aid in dealing with the divorce and subsequent financial arguments.Leaving the matrimonial home will in no way compromise her financial rights - and if your neice will go with her the chances of her ex obtaining an order that the child lives with him is remote. How ever if the child will NOt go with her then there could be a problem (assuming that he can actually care for the child which seems unlikely if he works nights) as it is the housing needs of the CHILD which have priority.If she stays with her father then he may be able to remain in the current house for a further four years before your sister receives her share of the equityIf the child remains with your sister then she can either remain in the current home or seek an order for sale and move to a smaller house with a much smaller mortgage - and receive a higher share of the equity when the child is 18.Key to it all is supporting your sister in whichever option she choses Please ask if you need further details - i will be on and off line throughout the dayClare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clare. Thanks for this, it's very helpful. I understand that due to her husband's strong financial situation, he would still probably have to provide some financial support to my sister, even if their daughter chooses to stay put. Prior to divorce proceedings, is there any way she can claim this from him, or would it have to be some informal arrangment until the solicitors are involved? My parents are obviously currently providing her with financial assistance, but this can't go on ad infinitum.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Yes she would still be entitled to spouse maintenance
There is a proceedure for claiming maintenance prior to divorce proceedings - but frankly it is quicker and cheaper to do so within divorce porceedings.
Setting up an urgent Family Mediation appointment might assist