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Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 33807
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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, I'm divorcing my husband and we are at nisi stage. I've

Customer Question

Hi, I'm divorcing my husband and we are at nisi stage. I've held off applying for the absolute as the financial are not yet sorted. We sold the FMH and split the equity as agreed. I have since bought a new house in my sole name to house myself and our 8 year old daughter. However, since signing the consent order my husband has been very deceitful and left his high salaried job by choice and is now employed via a friends Ltd. company and getting 60% less salary. hence the child maintenance has now redcued by 60%. He has informed me that he intends to pay a lot more into pension also in order to reduce the child maintenance. He is obviously quite gleeful about this. He feels that due to me receiving a large chunk of the equity I should no longer receive child maintenance and is doing all he can via the CMS to ensure this is the case. Therefore, I informed the court by email that my husband had manipulated the situation, that my income was no longer what was stated as he has reduced child maintenance by 60% on purpose and that he intends to reduce it further. So the judge declined the consent order. I'm not sure what will happen from here onwards, but if we go to court and I request his large pensions and further equity to be considerd - there wouldn't be a chance that the judge would ask me to pay back money to my ex-husband from the equity or sell my property that I've just bought to house my daughter would they? I currently have a mortgage on the property too which I've just started to pay.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 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.
How much was the equity in the Former Matrimonial Home and what was the equity split?
Are you sure he is not also a Shareholder in the Company and receiving dividends?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare,

The equity was split so as I received £250,000 and he received £97,000. He has 8 pensions which are valued at £400k, mine is just one at £99k. He had £45k of debt and I had £21k of debt, both of which were cleared with the equity we received upon the sale of the FMH. He has always been a high earner and chose to leave his permanent role with TUI which paid him some £110k per annum, he also received a bonus of £15k upon leaving (it was a retention bonus so as to ensure he stayed until November '14). He left this role to take up consultancy working for his friends company with a salary of £41k. He used to pay me £766 per month via the CMS advice/guidance. I work full time and receive £1,735 per month take home, I also receive some tax credits as I pay ll of the after school child care for our 8 year old daughter which is £190 per month. I have purchased a house with the equity and had to clear the debt and furnish the property as i left the house with nothing (I had to flee with our daughter due to domestic violence and the ex would not allow me back to the house) My husband obviously used to take home a salary of £4,800 per month but has chosen to leave this role. His friend started up several new companies in April of this year, when they were working out their tax avoidance scheme and also how he can evade paying child maintenance. He has now reduced his child maintenance payments to £323 per month and is in talks with the CMS about how much he can now pay into his pension so that it lowers it to nearly nothing. He feels that due to the amount of equity he paid me he does not need to pay child maintenance. He is 58 years old and I am 43. I'n not a high earner and am not able to increase my salary as I work full time now. We were married for 15 years and cohabitating and together for 20 years in total. I wrote to the judge after the consent order was signed by us both as my husband had mislead me regarding his plans for his continued child maintenance support. I did not request pensions, spousal maintenance nor further equity to be considered, even though the eventual split of assets were £120K in his favour (which included his pensions). As the judge has refused to sign the consent order due to my concerns and that I now feel I should consider the pension and further equity due to him trying to pay me as little as possible for the on-going care of our daughter. She is with me 12 days out of 14. He also wants me to pay for the travel of our daughter on his visitation weekends as he lost his license due to drink driving and chose to move a*****away to be closer to his new job. My worry is that the judge may ask me to give back some of the equity and I will lose the house that I have purchased to house myself and our daughter due to my husband now being on such a low salary, even though it is clear that he has done this all on purpose. I know that he is consulting and contracted out at between £800-£1,000 per day for Travis Perkins but will be hard pushed to prove this as his friend will shifted funds that will come in and she has provided him with an employment contract showing his salary of £41k. He may well be a shareholder and I will gain information on all the companies listed, but surely if he receives dividends he would need to pay tax and this would then be visible to the hmrc, the CMS take make their decisions based upon the HMRC. Also, What is your opinion of what the judge may decide, I cannot lose this home that I've just bought and settled with my daughter as we have been homeless for nearly a year.

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Just to check - would this "friend" also possibly be a new partner?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

No, she is married to another one of his friends. The woman is a work colleague whom he has worked with for approx 2.5 yrs. Her and some of consultants came in to work for TUI for my ex-husband as he was management level, this is how they met. Her consultancy is now the company he works for and she is helping him to avoid tax and child maintenance payments by providing him an employment contract, which I'm sure will be correct, but obviously she will be getting the rest of the contract money from his daily rate through to him via her 7 other companies that she set up 6 months ago.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I've not heard anything further from you - are you still able to answer my query?

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
My apologies for the delay
You have nothing to fear from the matter houng back to court - the housing needs of the child are the priority and your settlement was not over generous to start with
The CMS do not take account of dividends on the first assessment - but do on an appeal - which is why I suspect that this is what your ex is working on ( the fact that on appeal they are counted is not widely known)
The benefit of going through the courts will be that you can request copies of ALL the relevant statements to trace the funds
Please ask if you need further details
Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 33807
Experience: I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Clare,

Many thanks and really appreciate you putting my mind at rest. I had started to panic that I may lose our home if we went to court. I knew the financial agreement wasn't in my favour and was advised to look at pensions or more equity but felt I didn't want to take everything from him and was happy with having a home and being able to support our daughter. But obviously as soon as the order was signed, it became clear what he was doing and didn't want to pay any child maintenance, which in turn affects our daughters standard of living greatly. Thank you and I will be in touch with the CMS regarding an appeal. However, when would dividends be paid - on a monthly basis or yearly? I may need to wait a year before it shows the dividends he's received I guess?

Thank you again,

Charlotte

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Dividends can be paid quarterly.
I find it hard to believe that he would alter his lifestyle just to thwart the maintenance - I suspect he is the gave his cake and eat it type
Clare

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