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Ask Clare Your Own Question
Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34908
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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I am an honest, hardworking (teacher), responsible and loving

Customer Question

I am an honest, hardworking (teacher), responsible and loving father who has had to move out of the family home as my wife and I were experiencing marital difficulties. I did this with the joint understanding that we would seek relationship counselling in order to try and get our marriage back on track. I went through with the house purchase in January 2014 on this understanding. However, it soon became obvious that my wife had no intention of doing this as my frequent attempts to set this up were met with no cooperation or intention to do so on my her part as soon as the house sale had gone through.
Since the end of January I have given my wife £18000 from a settlement agreement from a work dispute of mine, in order to run the house. This is in addition to paying over £500 per month in bills as well. This in addition to me supporting her through medical school for seven years.
There is now little or no money left and it is my concern that I will be left with nothing as I have read a lot of horror stories about the rights of the man in divorce. My wife has been an emotional bully and is now turning very nasty when things aren't going her way and she is being stood up to, perhaps for the first time in our marriage.
My concern is that I will be left with nothing (although 50% access to our two small children has been agreed in principle, although I have some concerns about this due to my wifes recent increasingly bizarre behaviour)
Do I have any financial rights and what can I expect the courts view might be in this situation?
Will I have any chance of walking away with the chance of setting up a home for me and my children (who I adore and they adore me) or will the wife get everything?
Please help as am very stressed and upset by the current situation and I do not know where to turn.
Kind regards
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
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 is the house worth and how much is outstanding on the mortgage?
What other assets and debts are there.
How long have you lived together and how old are the children?
How much do you earn - and what does your ex expect to earn and when?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hi there

The house is worth approximately 245,000 and our mortgage is 210.000.

Our other assets are our cars. Mine is worth around £6000 and my wifes around £4000

We have been married 7 years an lived together 9.

We have two loans, one for maintenance at our previous property which was for £8000, it costs around £135 per month and there is about £4000 left on it. The other loan was for a car as mine fell to pieces. There is about £7000 left on this and it costs £135 per month.

We have £2000 on credit cards, both in my name, which has been used for holidays for the both of us and other things for us both.

My wife has approximately £20000 outstanding on a student loan for her medical school

I have been living at my mum's since January 2014 and have given my wife over £21,000 in support since then.

I earn approximately £2200 take home a month, my wife will earn similar when she returns to work next month but can expect to see her earnings rise considerably as she goes through the next year and becomes qualified as a GP.



Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
So there is about £13,000 outstanding in matrimonial debts - are the loans in joint or your sole name?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My sole name. My wife has been very careful to make sure nothing has been taken out in her name

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
How much are you currently paying each month?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I have been paying for all of the bills, mortgage and sundries since January.

The costs are about £3500 a month but I have paid in lump sums.

This has totaled approximately £16700 in payments and £510 per month for council tax and bills etc.

My wife has contributed very little, if anything at all during this time

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
Have you stopped now?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Well, the last payment was a week or two ago and there is now no more money left

I have said I will buy anything my daughters need but my wife is not getting another penny

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
How old are your daughters?
How often do you have them overnight?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

My daughters are nearly three and nine months

i see them regularly but don't have them overnight

Expert:  Clare replied 3 years ago.
The starting point is that you will have to pay child maintenance of 16% of your Gross income
However that is it - your ex is expected to pay her bills - including the mortgage- from that and her own resources
However you will responsible for the debts in your name.
There is limited equity in the property - and the priority for the family court is the safe and secure housing of the children until they are 18.
On that basis it is unlikely that you will be able to force a sale until your youngest child is 18 (or your ex cohabits)- however at that point I would expect you to get 50% of the equity to reflect the fact that you have taken on the debts
I hope that this is a useful guide - please ask if you need further details