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Ask James Mather Your Own Question
James Mather
James Mather,
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 1390
Experience:  Senior Partner at Berkson Wallace
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I have been married for 18 years. 11 years ago my mother

Customer Question

I have been married for 18 years. 11 years ago my mother died and left me £160,000. My husband resigned from his job and together we used the money to renovate a house. We then sold that house and our home and bought one large property. I now want a divorce from my husband. Do I stand any chance of keeping some of my inheritance?
Assistant: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any papers in family court?
Customer: No
Assistant: Family Court normally sits in a local County and Magistrates' Court. Do you know the location of the court? If not, what county do you live in?
Customer: Devon
Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Total rejection and affection since my inheritance and also physical abuse
Submitted: 6 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  JimLawyer replied 6 months ago.

Hello, thank you for the question.

I am sorry to hear of the situation. If the inheritance is received and used during the marriage, the court considers it to be for the use of the spouses in the matrimonial finances and as such, it may conclude that you cannot keep it. However, the court looks at all the circumstances of the case including the length of marriage, what lifestyle you were accustomed to, your financial contributions (and his), any debts, any children, and more factors.

I don't know if you co-own the house or one party owns it (I presume you both own it). You can use the fact you contribute the £160,000 towards the house to argue for a higher share. Ultimately it would come down to negotiation but as I say, if the inheritance monies were used by you both for the house, the court is likely to conclude the money was "in the matrimonial pot used by both parties".

Is your husband likely to consent to the divorce and if so, has there been any discussion regarding finances at this early stage?