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Ask Harris Your Own Question

Harris, Law Specialist
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 1621
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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My wife has breached a court order by not making a mortgage

Customer Question

My wife has breached a court order by not making a mortgage payment she agreed to make. This month I deducted the money from her maintenance and made the payment. She is now threatening to enforce the court order for her maintenance. Would a court even entertain that given I'm merely enforcing the court order without incurring legal costs?
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Harris replied 3 months ago.

Hi, thank you for your question. Are you able to attach a copy of the court order so that I can consider the exact terms?

Customer: replied 3 months ago.
Hi,I've attached it. Its definitions 4 & 5 as they relate to clause 18 on page 4. To remain in the former marital home, my ex wife said she'd meet both the mortgage and the secured loan against the mortgage. After the court order was issued, she refused to meet that element deemed "the loan" - which is definition 5. This would have been the 3rd payment breach and I was being pressurised by the loan company. I could not afford any more legal costs so I deducted the amount due and paid it. Her solicitor is now saying I'm in breach, even though in reality, I'm merely ensuring the court order is being met fully.ThanksLance
Expert:  Harris replied 3 months ago.

Thank you for providing this. I have considered the order and you should be aware that:

- The mortgage repayments as specified in paragraph 18 is an undertaking by her to the Court that she will meet these costs

-The maintenance provision as specified in the remainder of the order is an Order of the court

The difference between the undertaking that she has and the Order against you, is that the Order is legally enforceable and you will be building up arrears by not settling the maintenance and she can apply for enforcement of the order.

With the undertaking that she has given, to "enforce" this you would need to apply separately for committal proceedings and she will be given an opportunity to explain why she has not kept to the undertaking and if it is a reasonable reason why, then she will unlikely be penalised. I refer you to page 1 of the Order which sets out what happens if there is non-adherence to undertakings.

In any event, you should be keeping to the Order to pay her maintenance and she has a duty to indemnify you herself for any missed mortgages - you should not be offsetting the missed mortgage payments by maintenance.

I appreciate that this may not be the answer you would have hoped for, but 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,

Expert:  Harris replied 3 months ago.

Hi, this question remains open. If you found my information provided helpful please could you rate my response positively using the stars at the top of this page as I will not be credited for my response without a positive rating.

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