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ukfamilysolicitor, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1435
Experience:  Divorce, Finances, Children, Domestic Violence, Care Proceedings
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My husband has filed on the grounds of my adultery.

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My husband has filed for divorce on the grounds of my adultery. I have received a statement I must sign. Do I need to see a solicitor if I am happy with the statement. He has said he will only ask for divorce costs if I don't cooperate. Can he later come after ne for money. He is not paying me any child maintenance for our daughter who is 6. Could he apply for custody ?
Welcome to Just Answer.
Thank you for your question.
I am a Solicitor and will assist you.
If you are content with the statement that has been prepared then you can sign the same. If you consider that the Adultery was as a result of a failing marriage then you can also add this to the statement. You can choose not to defend a petition of Adultery but file a statement stating why you think that the marriage had broken down before the Adultery took place.
If you don't have the funds to be able to contribute towards divorce costs then you should state this. When the petition is filed at court - you will receive a copy with a form called 'Acknowledgement of Service Form'. You should also detail on this form that you wont defend the petition but that you consider that the marriage had broken down prior to the Adultery taking place. If costs are still sought then you can make representations to the Judge at Decree Nisi stage as to why you cant pay and the Judge will decide. Your husband may simply choose not to pursue costs if you cooperate.
If you agree to a petition of Adultery then this will not mean that your husband is entitled to a greater share when dealing with the matrimonial finances nor does it mean that he will have any greater rights in relation to your children.
In relation to the matrimonial finances - The correct process for dealing with the matrimonial finances and division is to go through a process known as full and frank financial disclosure. Yourself and your wife need to exchange full details of all assets and liabilities before negotiations take place in relation to settlement.
The normal rule for division is 50/50 however the matrimonial causes act sets out factors which could lead to a departure from this rule. A few examples are the likely earning capacity of both of you for the future, health needs, future care of children etc.
If your husband has a larger income then you - then you should also consider asking for spousal maintenance.
You should consider making a referral to a specialist mediation service. I note that you have already mentioned mediation - but if doesn't sound like you have started the full process yet. They can assist in relation to the process of disclosure and also in relation to negotiations about division. One such mediation service is the National Family Mediation service.
If agreement cannot be reached then an application would need to be made to the court. You can not make an application to the court until you have at least attempted mediation first.
It is very important that no division of any assets takes place until a court order is obtained.
If division is agreed without the need to apply to court then you should submit a consent order for Judicial approval prior to division. Not doing so could leave you open for a future claim. A Solicitor can help you draft the Consent Order to protect your position for the future.
If you are not currently receiving any maintenance for your children then you should consider making a claim to the Child Maintenance Service.
In relation to the care of your children - courts do prefer parents to try and agree the arrangements that the children will spend with both parents. Mediation can also help if this cant be agreed. Mediation would at least need to be attempted by your husband before he could make an application to the court for a child arrangement order.
Kind Regards
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