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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34105
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 in the final stages of my divorce settlement, a consent

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I am in the final stages of my divorce settlement, a consent order is being drafted which in principle states that the matrimonial home (approx value £200k) will be sold and split 50:50, after costs and my pension,( which is in payment, £1200/month) will be subject to a pension sharing order. I have asked my solicitor if there is any way that I can have the two linked by date as my concern is that my ex wife will receive half of my pension in a few months time with no guarantee of when ( if ever!!) that I receive half the value of the house "when" it is sold.
Is there any way I can get my ex wife to pay back what she has received from my pension
up to the actual date I receive my capital?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
HiThank you for your questionMy name is ***** ***** do my best to help you but I need some further information firstIs the house on the market?Clare
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hello Clare,
No the house is not on the market yet, it should be, consequently my concern is that she will delay putting it on the market but more importantly use whatever tactics she likes to delay the actual sale. Initially we would have to agree on a valuation which in theory should be achieved via estate agent valuations, I anticipate her wanting the highest valuation whereas I just want the place sold almost at any "realistic" price. My main worry is that once it is actually on the market she will want to hang out for the highest price or simply put people off buying it, I will have little control as it will be left to her to negotiate/sell the house as directed by the court order. As mentioned previously her track record to date is such that I don't trust her one bit, she has gone back on her word twice when agreement had been reached, has sent me let's say "rather unsavoury" e.mails that we are at the stage,( and have been for some time) that I refuse to contact her directly. I point this out not only to give you a flavour of her character but also to pre empt any suggestion that we do joint viewings, it is not an option. I know that I would be able to get feed back from said estate agents but even then any adverse comments they give me of her behaviour would leave me where? she could carry on in her own way regardless.
To update you on the current state of affairs, I have just received an e.mail from my solicitor which literally states that "I am between a rock and a hard place"!! he has had a response from my ex' solicitor whereby the only concession she will give is to delay applying to the court for the decree absolute for 6 weeks....the house could still be on the market in 6 years!!!!!
I find it difficult to accept that there is no way that the court cannot add an instruction within the court order that if the house is not sold within a specified period of time after she is in receipt of half of my pension then she repays the full amount received until the house is sold.
As far as I am aware the hearing is still scheduled for February 9th and I am tempted to take my chance and attend to plead my case but the risk is I could end up worse off both in terms of the settlement, court costs and still getting no resolution from the court to link the sale of the house with the pension sharing order.
I have decided to contact you as a last resort as although I am sure my solicitor is doing his best for me (family friend), I want to explore every avenue before agreeing to something that is unfair and morally wrong.Andy.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Sent a reply 2 hours ago, am I doing something wrong?
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
My apologies for the delay - I have been unwell
I can understand your concerns
What is her income position - and do not worry there is a way of dealing with this
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is too late now, I needed a reply by last friday as that was the deadline to reply to my ex wife's solicitor. I did put "urgent" on the response icon.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
My apologies - may I ask what option you decided on - and what the final wording was?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Clare,Things got rather hectic last Friday with the solicitor representing my ex "faxing" a request to my solicitor to confirm the draft consent order, sign and return it or risk court costs! I got back in touch with my solicitor who tried to reassure me that there were certain court controls that could be imposed if there was a deliberate delay on her part to sell the house, he also reiterated his advice on not going to court, I accepted this advice and signed and returned the relevant form.I obviously am still concerned that I will have no control over the sale of the house, ( no wish to contact my ex directly) and still find it difficult to accept that a court can't link the actual sale of the house with a pension sharing order, all it will do ( allegedly) is link the "instruction to put the house on the market" with the pension sharing order. This could still leave me in a position to give up half of my pension but not get half of the proceeds from the sale of the house until some time in the future, my "financial needs" are clearly not being met!It would be interesting to hear if you could have advised anything differently with regard to the court order but that I guess is now too late, however, there may be something you could suggest to help facilitate matters in relation to the sale of the house.Andy.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Actually no it is not too late at all - is there any chance you can reproduce the wording of the Order for Sale?
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Do you still need assistance?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi there Clare,
I have been having problems attempting to reply to you as I seem to be going round in circles on this site but hopefully as you have contacted me directly I will try again.My main concern is that the pension sharing order will be issued either with the decree absolute or a few weeks later as my ex has conceded to wait 6 weeks after the court order before applying for the decree absolute which as you know is the trigger for the pension sharing order to take effect. She has gone back on her word a number of times so I won't be relying on her keeping it this time, however, by way of explanation my solicitor expressed my concern over the fact there was no time link between her getting half of my pension and me receiving half of the proceeds of the house. This is why she made this "magnanimous" offer of delaying 6 weeks! BUT, the house could take 6 months or years to sell, she would be in receipt of my pension and I am left up the creek without a paddle as I will need the money from the sale of the matrimonial home to survive.You ask about the details of the court order, thr relevant parts are as follows :8. The family home to be put on the market immediately
(a) at such price as agreed by the parties or in default, determined by the court.
(b) estate agent agreed by parties
(c) sold at such price agreed by the parties
(d) applicant conducts the sale
(e) applicants solicitor to do conveyancing
(f) proceeds , balance to be equal between applicant and respondentThere is a section called "Liberty to Apply" which states :
"The parties shall have liberty to apply to the court concerning implementation and timing of this order only"As you can see the order only states that the house is to be put on the market immediately but there is no limit on how long it may take to sell. I would have thought that it only fair that any pension that she receives prior to the proceeds of the house being split is paid back, I do not trust her one bit as unfortunately there will be little or no incentive for her to sell the house quickly. Even if she didn't stall the sale of the house with the best will in the world in the current market there is no telling how long it will take to sell.So, are there any control measures that can be put in place similar to the one I mention above or do I just have to sit it out and hope for the best. I should add that I am currently renting a property with my new partner and neither of us has an income, we live off my Local Government Pension, ( £1200/month) and I am due to receive my state pension this October.I hope that I have provided enough background to this, I am waiting for the issue of the court order as the details above were only in draft form which I had to agree to before February 9th.Andy.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Who is paying the outgoings on the property at the moment?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I do not quite understand the relevance of this question but the answer is she is. There is virtually no mortgage left ( about 9k and about £30/month). My daughter, who is 28 and a teacher still lives with her and pays her around £250/month.
I left the family home in October 2012 and paid half the bills for 6 months, my rent plus utilities here is approx' £1000/month with food on top!
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
I was wondering how much the mortgage payment was but I see it is actually so small as to be irrelevantRealistically how marketable is the house?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Clare,I really don't see the relevance of your last question or this one, whether the house is marketable or not is not the point, I feel that I have gone to length explaining my concerns which you do not seem to be addressing. I know perfectly well that the house needs to be marketed at the right price in the current market, it is a nice three bedroom terraced house in a very good area of Leicestershire, ( the old part of Burbage), but obviously it needs the right person to come along.But all of this goes without saying and is missing the point, perhaps I havn't explained myself well enough so I will summarise what I need to know :
(a) If for whatever reason the house takes longer to sell than the date at which my ex is in receipt of my pension, is there anything legally that can be done to expedite the sale?
(b) Is there any way that my ex can be made to pay back any pension that she has received before I receive my share of the proceeds of the house?Both of these questions go hand in hand and are my main concern as the court apparently cannot link the date that the pension sharing order comes into effect with " The actual DATE that the proceeds of the house are shared"!
As I have already mentioned and confirmed in the draft court order, the court only states that "the house must be put on the market immediately"The questions above are what I need advice/guidance on.Andy.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Clare replied 1 year ago.
HII am sorry that you feel that I sidetracked - but part of the issue is how marketable the house is in terms of looking at practical options.In strict legal terms the answers to your questions area. If the sale is not properly managed and you can show that your ex is delaying, the house is overpriced, she is sabotaging viewings etc then you can apply to the court for permission to take over the sale of the property - but not otherwiseb. NoLooking at it more holistically the following points need to be noted1. It actually takes months for a Pension Sharing Order to be implemented - although there will be some backdating involved.2. In fact had the matter gone to court the Judge would not have agreed with your arguments - the Capital and the Pension Sharing Order would be seen as being separate3.In terms of the sale of the house it is for you to be pro-active - even though she has conduct of the sale.There is no reason why the Estate Agents should not have already been agreed and the house on its way to be marketed by the end of this week - you must have already had valuationsYou need to call the agents at least m=once a week - and check up on any viewings.If there is any suggestion that she is putting off viewers get a friend of a friend to show interest and find out what is happeningIf there is no interest - make the Agent your friend find out why - and be ready to go back to court if necessary.I fully appreciate that none of the above is the answer that you wanted - butI am afraid it was always the inevitable outcome - although I am disappointed on your behalf thatthere had been no early indication that the property should be marketed prior to the final hearing
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