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ukfamilysolicitor
ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1191
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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My wife and I have been married for 2 and a half years. She

Resolved Question:

My wife and I have been married for 2 and a half years. She is the bigger income earner and we have just bought a house. As I sold my flat and don't have a large income I would need to continue to live at the house during our separation (which might not be tolerable) I suspect she is having an affair with a work colleague and would like to understand how things would be for me financially should I separate from her. How would our marital assets be divided? What could I expect if I can demonstrate that she is being unfaithful?
Assistant: Where are you located? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: London
Assistant: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: No
Assistant: Anything else you want the solicitor to know before I connect you?
Customer: I don't think so
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 1 month ago.

Hello

Welcome to Just Anwer

I am a Solicitor and will assist you.

Please may I ask:

- how long were your cohabiting together before your marriage?

- any minor children?

- what is the equity in the house?

- what did you both contribute towards the house?

- whose name is ***** ***** in?

- any other assets for both of you including pensions?

- what is your respective income positions?

kind regards

Caroline

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Hi Caroline
Thank you for your response. See my answers below.1. 21 months
2. No
3. 120K approx
4. Both
5. Yes. Car; Pensions; Furniture; Jewellery. She owns 2 flats in her name. Both purchased before we married. I have £88k from the sale of my flat that I owned before we were married.
6. Me £35K salary gross pa; Her 110K salary + 40K approx bonus gross pa + £32 gross rent from flats
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 1 month ago.

Hello

Thank you for your response.

I note that you would prefer a phone call.

I am leaving shortly but could call you at 3pm would this be ok for you?

kind regards

Caroline

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Unfortunately I cannot speak then. I am happy to continue with typing for the moment
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 1 month ago.

Hello

thats fine by me :)

In relation to:

4. what were both your contributions?

5. what are the values?

kind regards

Caroline

PS - it will take me some time to type your answer and I have an appointment shortly but will respond as soon as I can.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
She contributed the deposit (£120K) and £40K of stamp duty and £3K for appliances.
I so far contributed £15K for stamp Duty and legal fees and £4K for furniture.We have signed a document stating that I own 40% and she owns 60% of the house
Customer: replied 1 month ago.
oh, her deposit was financed by extending the mortgage of one of the flats.
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 1 month ago.

Hello

Thank you for that.

What sort of document was this?

was it a trust deed signed at the time of the house purchase or a prenuptual agreement?

kind regards

Caroline

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
It was a trust deed signed at the time of the purchase
Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 1 month ago.

Thank you

I will prepare your answer shortly. This will take me some time to type.

kind regards

Caroline

Expert:  ukfamilysolicitor replied 30 days ago.
Hello Please accept my sincere apologies for my delay in responding to you today. Thank you for your patience. I am sorry to hear about how your wife has treated 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. This period of time can include any previous periods of cohabitation. You are a bit short on this time. You may want to consider waiting before you issue divorce proceedings to deal with the issue of the matrimonial finances.

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 spouse’s pensions).

Please note not your wifes infidelity has no bearing or impact at all in relation to the matrimonial finances and there division.

In reality you can expect that your wife is going to argue that the premarital assets should remain her assets. You need to be aware that the Trust Deed no longer has the same legal effect following your marriage as the home is now your matrimonial home.

As your wife does have more assets then you, then even if she did argue that you should both walk away from the marriage with what you put into the marriage I do not consider that a court would agree with her. The court can set aside some pre marital assets but only if there is sufficent assets to meet needs. The courts main priority is going to be that your housing needs are going to be met. You also need to be considering a claim for spousal maintenance as your income is much less.

If you are considering separation then 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 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 but separation is 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.

Let me know if I can assist you further

kind regards

Caroline

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