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Harris, Family Law Expert
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2851
Experience:  Family Law - Specialist in Divorce, Financial Relief and Children Matters
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I discovered my husbands affair in March and he agreed to

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I discovered my husbands affair in March and he agreed to drop her and try to work to reconcile with me.
I found out last week that he has stayed in touch throughout the intervening period, and is now talking of separation and divorce
He is a high earner, and I just have my (frozen) civil service pension of around £1000/ month. If we split will I be entitled to maintenance to keep my current lifestyle?

Hi, thank you for your question. Just a bit more information required to fully assist you:
-Are you in England or Wales?
-How old are you both?
-How long have you been married?
-Do you have any children together, if so their ages and proposed arrangements?
-What assets and pensions do you both have (both sole and joint), together with values?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will be 60 in September - he will be 52 in October
We will have been married for 24 years in December 2016
We have a special needs daughter who will be 21 in December - so technically no longer dependent
We own our house - value around 700K in joint names
I have a civil service pension which is frozen at 12k a year net - my only income
He has a pension pot with his work - value Unknown, and earns in excess of of £100k per year
He does have some savings - value unknown
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He pays all the living costs, food, cars, holidays etc - my money goes on my own interests and holidays

Is there any mortgage on the property, if so how much?

Are there any other assets or property at all?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No - we own the house outrightHe has some investments - again value Unknown.
He also owns 1/3 of our daughters flat in Tunbridge wells - his share is worth around 35k but it is morgagedI took early retirement on 2006 to get out daughter through secondary school,
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
have not worked since. I'm unlikely to get a job like the one I left given my age
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
We live in England - Kent

Thanks - how many bedrooms is the property and is it just the three of you living there?

Will your daughter have to remain with either of you in the event of separation due to her special needs?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The property has 5 bedrooms, and there are just the 2 of us living here - our daughter has her own flat in town.She visits frequently, but is mostly independent of us now

Thanks for confirming. Firstly, if you are unable to meet your reasonable needs to maintain your lifestyle you can apply for spousal maintenance to meet this. Furthermore, you will also need to consider how both of you will be accommodated upon divorce. He may likely have good mortgage capacity due to his high income, and your capacity will be lower therefore you would have good argument to pursue a greater share of the equity.

Initially this should be attempted through mediation - you can find independent mediators here: 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 once the divorce petition has been issued.

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.

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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