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ukfamilysolicitor
ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1160
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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It is looking very likely that my husband and I will be

Customer Question

Hi, it is looking very likely that my husband and I will be starting divorce proceedings. We have been married 15 years and together for 20years, we do not have children. We have a joint mortgage on our main property and he has a mortgage in his name for a small flat that he uses in the week as he works away from home. I only work part time, a decision that we both made to improve our quality of life, and would not currently be able to support myself financially. When we first met I was the breadwinner and have supported us financially at different points during the marriage (when he lost his job). There is no infidelity on either side. I know for sure that he will not support me financially if he doesn't have to and will fight in every possible way for a clean break and will have no concern for my wellbeing. Can you please advise on my next steps and particularly the likelihood of spousal maintenance in this case? I am 48 years old.
Submitted: 15 days ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 14 days ago.

Hello

Welcome to Just Answer

I am a Solicitor and will assist you.

Please may I ask:

- what is the equity in both houses?

- are there any other assets for both of you including pensions? If so, what are the values?

- what are the respective income positions for both of you?

kind regards

Caroline

Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Hi,The equity in both houses is circa £85k, we have savings of £5k, we both have private pensions but I am unsure as to the value of these at the moment. I earn approx £8k but my employment contract ends in June 2018 and my husband earns £57k.Thanks
Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Just to add, the pension value is circa £30k for me and £20k for husband.Thanks
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 14 days ago.
Hello Thank you for your response. Please accept my apologies for my delay in responding to you. I think it is appropriate to give you an overview of the matrimonial finances and how the court deals with the same. In relation to the matrimonial finances - the correct way of dealing with the same is by making a claim which can only be done once divorce proceedings have been issued. The matrimonial finances includes all of the assets and liabilities for both of you. You will both be under a duty of full disclosure to provide full details of all assets and liabilities for both of you to each other. With a long marriage, considered to be over 5 years, then the starting point for the division of all assets is equality. The court considers the following criteria when deciding whether to depart from equality: The income, earning capacity, property and other financial resources which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future, including in the case of earning capacity any increase in that capacity which it would, in the opinion of the Court, be reasonable to expect a party to the marriage to take steps to acquire;The financial needs, obligations and responsibilities which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future;The standard of living enjoyed by the family before the breakdown of the marriage;The age of each party to the marriage and the duration of the marriage;Any physical or mental disability of either of the parties to the marriage;The contributions which each of the parties has made or is likely in the foreseeable future to make to the welfare of the family, including any contribution by looking after the home or caring for the family;The conduct of each of the parties, if that conduct is such that it would, in the opinion of the Court, be inequitable to disregard it;In the case of proceedings for divorce or nullity of marriage, the value to each of the parties to the marriage of any benefit which, by reason of the dissolution or annulment of the marriage, that party will lose the chance of acquiring (e.g. a right to your husband’s pensions). From what you have said as you earn significantly less thna your husband then you need to be seeking a larger share of the assets - somewhere around 10 - 20% more. You are also able to seek spousal maintenance. There is no set rule in respect of spousal maintenance but this is usually around a 1/3. The court will consider what your needs are moving forward and want to meet those need in particular your housing. The court will expect you to mitigate your position. That being if you can gain more hours and also see if you are entitled to any benefits to bolster your own income. You need to consider referring to family mediation. This is a prerequisite before you can apply to court. Google family mediation in your area and give them a call to self refer. Mediation will try and help you both through full disclosure of both your financial positions and discussions about division. If agreement can be reached at mediation then a consent order should be submitted to the court when applying for decree absolsute in divorce proceedings to finalise matters. If approved by a Judge this would become legally binding and you could enforce the same if your husband did not pay. If agreement cannot be reached at mediation then the mediator will sign the form that you need to apply to court. If divorce is not yet contemplated then you could consider a separation agreement. Mediation could again help you agree the terms for this. You need to be aware that such separation agreements are not legally binding on a future family court Judge but they can and do order in line with what was agreed if they considered that full disclosure had taken place and what was agreed was fair. If your husband stops supporting you and you have not issued for divorce proceedings then you should do so as you can then seek interim maintenancne which is usually generous to meet your needs until the final decisions have been made in your case. kind regards Caroline Please kindly remember to rate positively by clicking on the stars, so that credit is received for helping you today
Customer: replied 14 days ago.
Thank you, ***** ***** clarify the 1/3 in terms of spousal maintenance, i. e. a third of what?Many thanks
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 14 days ago.

Hello

Yes - sorry - its a 1/3 of his income but there is no set rule. Basically the court is going to want to make sure that you have enough to live on. The court will expect you to increase your income if thats possible but if you still cant meet your needs then spousal maintenance could be awarded up to a 1/3 of his income.

let me know if I can help you further

kindest regards

Caroline

Positive feedback is gratefully received

Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 10 days ago.

Hello

I note that this question remains unrated. Please do not hesitate to ask if I can assist you further.

If you could kindly rate my answer by using the stars that would be much appreciated.

kind regards

Caroline