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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34271
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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My girlfriends ex husband allowed their house to be reposessed

Customer Question

My girlfriends ex husband allowed their house to be reposessed after they got divorced, along with a £15000 secured loan. Now the house has been sold, there is a shortfall of £5000, plus the £15000 outstanding, along with around £8000 other loans/debts used for other purposes. Her ex husband is now demanding that she pay half of everything owed. Can he legally do this, bearing in mind that the property was in his posession when it was reposessed? She was also talked into borrowing money on his behalf during the marriage, but divorced him for, amongst other things, his controlling behaviour for example, borrowing money in her name. He also pays very little if any maintenance, and is now planning to leave the area as these debts are raising their heads, leaving my girlfriend to have to fend for herself.Can my girlfriend dispute his claims on the basis that his financial difficulties arose after the divorce? Surely any decent solicitor would have ensured that all the financial issues were sorted out at the time of the divorce, and not left to my girlfriend to have to sort it out verbally with her ex husband. What can she do to minimise the damage? Thanks Graham
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years 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 was actually agreed at the time of the divorce?
Are there children involved?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare, yes there are children involved, an 11 year old boy and a girl who is 18 in September. My girlfriend doesn't have much recollection of legal agreements being made, but there was a verbal agreement between her and her ex about how the debts should be split - she would repay the £8000 other loans, and her ex was to pay everything else - hes now denying this

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
When was the Decree Absolute?
Did a Solicitor act for her?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare, hope you're ok. The decree absolute was 20/5/13, although she had left the property when they had separated some 14 months earlier. A solicitor was acting on her behalf. Reading through the last of the solicitors letters last night it appears that my girlfriends ex refused to consent to a " clean break " - if this is any help at this stage? It would appear that financial agreements were not made at the time of the divorce either. Thanks


 


Graham

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
has her ex threatened to co bankrupt?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi, no. At the moment he is trying to get her to pay half of the mortgage shortfall after the sale, but there is joint accounts and loans that are currently not being paid by either party aswell as the secured loan. I assumed that any secured loan would be paid off on the sale of the property but this doesn't appear to have happenned.


 


Graham

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
What matrimonial debts does your partner have in her sole name?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

To the best of my knowledge she was asked by her ex to borrow £8000 to repay her ex's previous £7000 loan and raise a further £1000. This is in her sole name.The £1000 has long gone.


 


Graham

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Could you just recap for me what debts he has, she has and what are joint (and do not worry the overall news will be reasonably positive)
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi my girlfriends sole name debts are £8000, joint name debts are £15000 secured loan, £1000 approx overdraft, £1000 approx windows, shortfall on mortgage sale £5000, total £30,000


 


Graham

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
How much do they each earn?
Clare
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My girlfriend brings home £74 a week and gets tax credits £60 a week and on the odd rare occassion gets £80 maintenance each month, although I don't think shes had that for about 6 months. Her ex works as an agency worker but allegedly doesn't get much regular work so we're not sure of his earnings - probably around minimum wage though I would guess

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
Your girlfriend does NOT have to make any payments to her ex at all
The problem is that with the debts being in joint names if her ex disappears the lenders will simply chase her
What she needs to do is make an application within the divorce proceedings for an order dealing with the debts
Given the circumstances and the fact that she has the child of the family in her care there is a reasonable chance that the court will order that her ex pays the joint debts
This does not get her off the hook with the loan companies - but it means she can recover any money she pays out for her ex
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Clare
Clare and 3 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi Clare, thankyou very much for this information, we are both very happy with the response and feel now that we know exactly what we need to do to progress the situation Smile. Thanks again, happy customers. Have a great weekend ! Smile


 


Graham

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Hi
You are most welcome - I hope all goes well
Clare