Hi, thank you for your question. Just a bit more information required to fully assist you:
-How old are you both?
-Do you have any children together, if so their ages and arrangements?
-What the value and mortgage on both properties are?
-What other assets, together with value do you both have, including pensions?
-What is your gross income?
As part of the divorce you will need to reach a financial settlement which is approved by the court. Initially this should be attempted through mediation - you can find independent mediators here: http://www.familymediationcouncil.org.uk If a settlement is agreed this can be submitted to court under a consent order (together with a D81 form outlining your respective financial positions).
If mediation does not progress you should then proceed with an application to court under Form A for financial relief.
You will both need to provide each other with full and frank financial and income disclosure, as well as disclosure of your reasonable needs.
The Court's starting point is a 50-50 split of all matrimonial assets and ensuring that both your needs are met in relation to both assets and income. The criteria considered is:
1. 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;
2. The financial needs, obligations and responsibilities which each of the parties to the marriage has or is likely to have in the foreseeable future;
3. The standard of living enjoyed by the family before the breakdown of the marriage;
4. The age of each party to the marriage and the duration of the marriage;
5. Any physical or mental disability of either of the parties to the marriage;
6. 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;
7. 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;
8. 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.
In terms of your specific asset, the valuations will need to be up to date and the equity calculated. From what you have proposed, and if the valuations remain in the same proportions, then the settlement you are proposing to her is not an equal split of the assets as her property has a lot more equity than your one, and therefore the proposed settlement may not be in your best interest.
Furthermore, given her salary of £1200, her young age and no children in her care, her reasonable needs would be modest and this is what is looked at when a court decides whether there should be spousal maintenance (this will include payments of her bills and mortgage that you are doing now), therefore, it may not be in your interest to continue paying these as she will need to demonstrate that she is maximising her own income to enable there to be a clean break between you.
In relation to your pensions, given the marriage was only 7 years, and she is 35 years old, a pension sharing order will unlikely be appropriate - she has at least 25-30 years left before retirement and can accumulate her own pension.
If you have any further questions regarding this please let me know. In the meantime if you found this information helpful please provide a positive rating using the stars at the top of this page. I will not be credited for answering your question without a positive rating. Thank you
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