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Clare
Clare, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 34105
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practice since 1985 with a wide general experience.
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Clare I went through a divorce in 1999; there were two

Customer Question

Hi Clare
I went through a divorce in 1999; there were two Endowment Policies and my ex-husband and I were to have one each. I duly received mine but my ex and his solicitor failed to complete the paperwork for his policy and the divorce was finalised with the Policy still in my name. My ex-husband died on 3 March 2015 and my two daughters by our marriage have turned against me and want the policy - worth £43K. They are willing to go to Court if necessary. I have offered them £10K each but they have rejected this. I just don't know what to do bearing in mind the hurt they are causing me. I raised them alone and in all the years never received any money from my ex-husband. Help!
Sue
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.
If it was agreed that the Policy would be his may I ask why you are not willing to release it to his estate now?
Was a Court Order made setting out the agreement?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Clare

Yes a court order was made but my ex-husband and his solicitor failed to do the paperwork and the divorce went through with the policy remaining in both names. The reason I am not willing to release to his estate is that I raised my two girls alone; he never paid any maintenance. I struggled financially for many years and was forced to encase my own policy for half its' value. I was then forced to sell my home and buy a small flat. Over the years I had to remortgage to enable me to care for the girls.

I believe that I am owed years of back maintenance in the region of £60K and that as my ex and his solicitor failed to carry out the paperwork and the policy is now in my sole name, I should be able to encash it. I have offered the girls £10K each but they want the total proceeds.

Thanks

Sue

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
Was there a court order for maintenance and what did you do to enforce the arrears during his lifetime?
Clare
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi

I don't think there was a court order for maintenance. However, he should have paid me a certain amount through the Child Support Agency. When they reduced his payments to £5 a week I contacted my local MP who was brilliant and got the CSA to investigate immediately. After several months investigation it was found he was defrauding the CSA. I received a personal written apology from the Chief Exec of the CSA for mishandling my case. I was owed £2500 from my ex, but never received a penny. My ex immediately left his job and went on long term sick leave - I could not even claim the minimum of £5 a week. Even though I asked him on many occasions, he refused to help me in any way financially for the children - even refusing to buy them a pair of shoes. I was told by him that if I needed money I should sell my clothes.

I would also add that he subjected me to physical abuse for 9 months before the court ordered him to leave the house.

Thanks

Sue

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
I am sorry but the news is not good.
Despite the fact that the policy is still in your name and the Solicitors failed to complete the paperwork, legally the policy proceeds belong to your ex's estate and therefore to your children.
At best you could claim the £2500 arrears from the Estate
I am sorry I know that this is not what you wish to hear - but legally this is the position and your children could sue you for the funds if you do not pay them over.
Please ask if you need further details
Clare
Clare and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you Clare

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Hi
You are welcome - I just wish I had had better news for you
Clare